Skupski and Krawczyk retain their mixed doubles title

Skupski and Krawczyk retain their mixed doubles title

Venue: All England Club Appointment: June 27-July 10
Cover: Live on BBC TV, radio and online with extensive coverage on BBC iPlayer, Red Button, connected TVs and the mobile app.

Britain’s Neal Skupski and American Desirae Krawczyk retained their Wimbledon mixed doubles title with a straight-set victory over Australian duo Matthew Ebden and Sam Stosur.

Skupski and Krawczyk fought off a tight first set before dominating the second to win 6-4 6-3 on center court.

They are the first pair to defend the title since Czech brother and sister Cyril Suk and Helena Sukova in 1997.

They beat Britain’s Harriet Dart and Joe Salisbury in the 2021 final.

“It’s amazing,” Skupski, 32, said after winning her second Grand Slam doubles title. “It’s especially good that my parents are here. They couldn’t come last year.

“I got a late call from Des to play, so it’s only been one team for two weeks, but we’ll have to go for three next year – if she plays for me.”

Earlier, Ebden and fellow Australian Max Purcell rode a five-set epic in the men’s doubles semi-final to beat Briton Salisbury and American Rajeev Ram.

The mixed doubles final traditionally closed the tournament on a Sunday evening, but was brought forward three days for this year’s edition.

It’s unlikely planners thought the change would require a player to spend almost six hours on the pitch in a single day, but that’s how things turned out for Ebden.

After playing for four hours and 20 minutes in the men’s doubles semi-final, he was given a 90-minute rest before heading to center court for the mixed final at 7:00 p.m. BST.

A grueling 17-minute opener didn’t help Ebden’s cause, especially as Skupski and Krawczyk survived two break points and 10 points to hold serve.

In contrast, Ebden and Stosur, the 2011 US Open women’s singles champions, held to love three times, only to be beaten 5-4 as the second seeds picked the perfect moment to strike.

Both pairs traded breaks in the second set before a foot fault by Ebden contributed to a love break that proved crucial as Skupski and Krawczyk served up the game.

High quality game ends in agonizing defeat for Salisbury and Ram

Joe Salisbury (right) and Rajeev Ram have now lost three Wimbledon semi-finals

Salisbury and American Rajeev Ram failed to convert five match points as they missed a first men’s doubles final at Wimbledon.

The top seeds dominated until Australia’s Ebden and Max Purcell staged a last minute fightback to win 3-6 6-7 (1-7) 7-6 (11-9) 6-4 6-2.

Salisbury and Ram were seeking a third Grand Slam title together and were dominant on the way to the opening two sets.

After recovering from a breakdown in the third to level for 4-4, they were just two games away from victory.

The Briton was brought in twice in a marathon service game that lasted nearly 15 minutes and they fended off four break points to hold on and move even closer to victory in what was a high-quality encounter.

But the Aussies forced a tie-break and earned an early mini-break before being pushed back as Salisbury and Ram set up a five-point match point streak.

Some on a jam-packed Court One could barely bear to watch them come and go, with a double fault from Salisbury, a video challenge that showed a shot was out and a lucky bounce off Purcell’s racquet frame annihilating their chances.

Ram scored a powerful return from Ebden to send him into a fourth set, where the Australians used their momentum and broke in the 10th game to set up a decider.

Salisbury and Ram fell behind early in the fifth, and despite a few backtracking opportunities – including one in a thrilling 19-hit rally that featured nearly every type of hit in the book – they couldn’t find a hit. way to go back. .

The Briton played long on the Australians’ second match point, unleashing wild chest shots and leaps from the 14th seed, who 90 minutes earlier were on the brink of a straight-sets loss.

For Salisbury and Ram, it was a third excruciating Wimbledon semi-final defeat in five years.

“We couldn’t have been really closer to being in the final and we both screwed it up and couldn’t get over the line,” Salisbury said.

“It’s tough. We played a few bad points the rest of the game but obviously we played two bad ones on match point.

“Obviously there’s pressure, you’re serving to get into the final. There are extra nerves there, but you still have to do better than that.”

In the other men’s doubles semi-final, defending champions Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic prevailed in a fifth-set tie-break against Colombian duo Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah.

Croatian second seeds Mektic and Pavic won 6-7 (2-7) 7-6 (7-0) 4-6 6-2 7-6 (10-4) after four hours and 22 minutes against sixths seeds to prepare for a final meeting with Ebden and Purcell.

Midway through the epic competition, Pavic accidentally cut teammate Mektic’s lip with his racquet as both players went for a ball during a point in the third set.

This led to Mektic taking a selfie of his injury to the crowd’s amusement – with opponent Farah even running to join him and Pavic for a photo in a moment of slight relief on Court One.

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