Wimbledon 2013: Laura Robson faces two matches in two days


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The Independent Online

Laura Robson is facing the prospect of having to win two matches in two days if she is to make it to the second week of Wimbledon for the first time. Rain started to fall shortly before the 19-year-old Briton was due to start her second-round match against Colombia's Mariana Duque-Marino on No 2 Court and play was eventually called off for the day before the two women could strike a ball in anger.

The one bonus for Robson is that the curtailment of the day's play means that she will get the chance to appear on Centre Court this afternoon. Robson, who has always played well on the biggest stages, and Duque-Marino will open this afternoon's programme at 1pm. Some rain is forecast, but at least the Centre Court roof will ensure that the match is played. The last time Robson played on Centre Court was when she won the Olympic mixed doubles silver medal alongside Andy Murray last summer.

Whoever wins – and Robson will be the firm favourite against the world No 117 – will go through to a third-round match against New Zealand's Marina Erakovic, who beat the rain and her opponent, China's Shuai Peng, the world No 26. Although Erakovic will have a day of rest from singles today, the world No 71 is due to play doubles.

Erakovic, who beat Peng 7-6, 6-2, is in a good run of form. The 25-year-old reached the third round of the French Open, where Britain's Elena Baltacha was one of her victims, and the same stage of the Aegon Classic at Edgbaston in her only grass-court tournament in the build-up to Wimbledon. Erakovic won her only meeting with Robson at Edgbaston last year.

Serena Williams is among those who have been impressed by Robson's progress. The world No 1, who beat Robson in their only meeting in Rome last month, believes the former Wimbledon junior champion has huge potential.

"She's a great person first of all, and I think that starts a really good career," Williams said. "She has an unbelievable game. She's so powerful. She's so positive. She's just so good. I think those are all qualities of what it takes to be a top player. She definitely has them all and she can go further than the top 10."

Pat Cash, the former Wimbledon champion, said after Robson's first-round victory over Maria Kirilenko that she was a future top five player.

"Typically after a big win you have a let-down, but if she gets focused early and she realises it's not going to be easy she will be all right," Cash said in looking ahead to Robson's second-round meeting with Duque-Marino. "It's all about being focused."