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Page last updated at 17:13 GMT, Monday, 21 June 2010 18:13 UK

Wimbledon 2010: Laura Robson beaten by Jelena Jankovic

Wimbledon Championships
Venue: All England Club, London Date: 21 June - 4 July
Live on BBC One and Two, HD, Red Button, BBC Sport website (UK only), Radio 5 live, 5 live sports extra; live text commentary online and on mobile phones. Full details of BBC coverage

Laura Robson

Jankovic sees off brave Robson

By Piers Newbery
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

British teenager Laura Robson lost in straight sets to fourth seed Jelena Jankovic on her Centre Court debut despite an encouraging display.

The 16-year-old had been given a wildcard into the main draw after rising to 234 in the world rankings.

Robson came under pressure on serve early on but settled well in the second set and tested Jankovic before the Serb sealed a 6-3 7-6 (7-5) victory.

Jankovic goes on to face Canada's Aleksandra Wozniak in round two.

"I thought it was going to be a lot more overwhelming, but the court is not as big as it seems on TV," said Robson afterwards. "It was really good to play on Centre and good there were lots of people cheering me on."

I was a lot more nervous this morning when I woke up. When I got onto the court I was just trying to focus on not losing 6-0 6-0

Laura Robson

Robson and Jankovic walked on to a half-empty Centre Court as many of the 15,000 spectators took a quick break after the unexpected five-set thriller that preceded them involving Roger Federer.

The young Briton had taken former world number five Daniela Hantuchova to three sets on her senior Wimbledon debut 12 months ago, but stepping on to Centre Court for the first was a different experience entirely.

Robson made a nervous start, double-faulting to hand over a break in the opening game of the match, but she worked her way into the contest and earned a chance to level in game six.

A Jankovic second serve sat up to be hit but the Briton could only put her forehand return into the tramlines, and when Robson double-faulted again to fall 5-2 behind she looked on course for a heavy defeat.

The strength of the 2008 junior champion's game is her ball-striking and it came to her aid in game eight as she broke to love with a fizzing return of serve, but Jankovic was climbing all over the Robson second serve and she broke once again to seal the set in 31 minutes.

Robson was able to stay with Jankovic when she made her first serve, but a statistic of just 14% of points won on her second serve held the key to the opening set.

It was an issue that the Londoner managed to address in the second with three impressive holds as her first serve really began to fire, and it got out her out of trouble on three break points in game eight.

But Jankovic had just too much power as a huge cross-court backhand set up a fourth chance, and an equally heavy forehand winner put the former world number one into a seemingly decisive 5-3 lead.


Robson was not done, however, and two searing forehand winners helped her break serve before she raced through a service game to level at 5-5.

Jankovic showed her class to move ahead with two aces in a row but Robson thrilled the home crowd by fending off two match points with a heavy serve and a big forehand.

It came down to a tie-break and Jankovic set about denying the Centre Court a second sensational match of the day as she moved 4-1 clear.

A 13th ace of the day from Robson on Jankovic's fourth match point could not stop the world number three, who sealed the win with a backhand on the next point after one hour and 27 minutes.

Robson became the third British woman to lose on the opening day at the All England Club but at least some real positives could be drawn from this defeat.

"I thought I could have done a bit more in the tie-break, tried to be more aggressive, but she's number four in the world for a reason," said Robson. "She played well.

"I thought I served well on the big points, so it's good that I was able to do that. I was a lot more nervous this morning when I woke up. When I got onto the court I was just trying to focus on not losing 6-0 6-0."

Robson was asked afterwards about how she had been received by the other players in the locker room after comments she made in a recent magazine interview that she insists were taken out of context.

"They've all been really nice to me, its hard to talk about it," she said.

The teenager will wait before making a decision whether to play in the girls' singles next week but confirmed she plans to play in the senior doubles and mixed doubles.

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see also
Robson v Jankovic as it happened
21 Jun 10 |  Tennis
British women suffer early exits
21 Jun 10 |  Tennis
Venus claims comfortable victory
21 Jun 10 |  Tennis
Federer escapes first-round shock
21 Jun 10 |  Tennis
Wimbledon day one as it happened
21 Jun 10 |  Tennis
Wimbledon - day one photos
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Men's singles latest
21 Jun 10 |  Tennis
Women's singles latest
21 May 10 |  Tennis

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