Robson falls at the final hurdle

By the time Andy Murray got on the court to face Roger Federer here last night his mixed doubles partner was on a flight back to London. Laura Robson, who asked her mother to record the men's final, returned home with a month's worth of memories but without the Australian Open girls' title.

Just as she did a year ago, Robson reached the junior final in Melbourne but then ran into an eastern European opponent who was older, stronger and more experienced. For Russia's Ksenia Pervak read the Czech Republic's Karolina Pliskova, who beat Robson 6-1, 7-6.

Pliskova, who is 22 months older than the 2008 Wimbledon junior champion and plays regularly on the senior tour, had too much power for Robson, who celebrated her 16th birthday last month. Robson, nevertheless, fought back well in the second set and led 4-1 in the tie-break before Pliskova recovered her poise.

"I was a bit disappointed with the way I played, in the first set anyway," Robson said. "But I've had a really good month in Australia, so I can go home pretty happy."

Robson, who was born in Melbourne, has been big news here ever since she partnered Murray in the Hopman Cup mixed team event in the build-up to the Australian Open. She followed up her achievements in Perth – which included a singles victory over Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez, the world No 26 – by winning one match in qualifying for the senior singles here, reaching the quarter-finals of the senior doubles with her Australian partner Sally Peers, and making the junior singles final for the second year in succession.

Rules designed to prevent teenage "burn-out" will restrict Robson to 12 senior events this year, but she already looks more than capable of mixing it with her elders. She has matured both physically and mentally since she played in her last Grand Slam event in New York only five months ago.

BUY WIMBLEDON TICKETS

Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones