Wimbledon 2013: Second seed Victoria Azarenka survives injury scare to reach the second round - Tennis - Sport - The Independent

Wimbledon 2013: Second seed Victoria Azarenka survives injury scare to reach the second round

 

Second-seeded Victoria Azarenka overcame a right knee injury from a scary fall for a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Maria Joao Koehler in her Wimbledon opener.

Follow game-by-game coverage of Andy Murray's first match of Wimbledon 2013 against Benjamin Becker

The second seed in the women's singles, who has been a losing semi-finalist in each of the last two years, was a set and a break ahead of Portugal's Maria Joao Koehler when she fell awkwardly at the back of the court.

It appeared she had suffered a leg injury that might end her involvement in the tournament, but after a long period of treatment the Belarusian ploughed on and clinched a 6-1 6-2 win.

Azarenka hobbled and winced through much of the second set, but Koehler was unable to take advantage of a weakened opponent.

It looked a glum situation for Azarenka when she slipped on the grass by the baseline at 6-1 1-0 in front.

She lay on the court receiving treatment for several minutes before taking an official injury time-out once back in her chair.

After having her right leg massaged and then strapped up, Azarenka put thoughts of abandoning the match out of her mind.

It looked worrying for th 23-year-old Monte Carlo-based player when she immediately served two double faults and had her serve broken to be hauled back to 1-1 in the second set.

But left-hander Koehler often made it too easy for Azarenka, failing to move her around the court as much as she might have.

A third successive break went in Azarenka's favour and from that point she was barely troubled, apart from by the leg problem which was proving more awkward than the player on the opposite side of the court.

Koehler sprayed a forehand wide at 5-2 to present Azarenka with a match point she seized, and Elena Baltacha's conqueror Flavia Pennetta awaits in the second round.

Discussing her injury, Azarenka told the BBC: "I was in such pain at the beginning. I don't know what happened.

"I almost slipped once before that. I'll have to be more careful.

"I'm going to do the best I can just to be ready for the next match. We'll see what happens."

Azarenka explained it was her right knee that was the chief concern.

"It happened so quick in the second that my leg just kind of collapsed," she said. "I felt like my knee just turned to the other way, and it was just so nasty.

"I was in such shock. For two minutes I had such a consistent pain that it just completely freaked me out.

"I didn't think about what was going to happen with the tournament. I just hoped I was okay."

She hopes to be able to carry on in the tournament, but said: "I still have to do some more check-ups to make sure. It's good to have tomorrow to recover. But I still need to make the final assessments.

"I just wanted to give everything I had on that court even though I knew it could get worse. I just wanted to play and try my best.

"At one point I couldn't see the ball. All I could think about is what happened."

Follow game-by-game coverage of Andy Murray's first match of Wimbledon 2013 against Benjamin Becker

PA

Suggested Topics
News
Paper trail: the wedding photograph found in the rubble after 9/11 – it took Elizabeth Keefe 13 years to find the people in it
newsWho are the people in this photo? It took Elizabeth Stringer Keefe 13 years to find out
Arts and Entertainment
Evil eye: Douglas Adams in 'mad genius' pose
booksNew biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Sport
FootballFull debuts don't come much more stylish than those on show here
Life and Style
Kim Kardashian drawn backlash over her sexy swimsuit selfie, called 'disgusting' and 'nasty'
fashionCritics say magazine only pays attention to fashion trends among rich, white women
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
TVShows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Arts and Entertainment
Hit the roof: hot-tub cinema east London
architectureFrom pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
Travel
travel
News
The ecological reconstruction of Ikrandraco avatar is shown in this illustration courtesy of Chuang Zhao. Scientists on September 11, 2014 announced the discovery of fossils in China of a type of flying reptile called a pterosaur that lived 120 millions years ago and so closely resembled those creatures from the 2009 film, Avatar that they named it after them.
SCIENCE
Life and Style
tech
Sport
David Moyes and Rio Ferdinand
FootballRio Ferdinand on why the former manager failed at United
Arts and Entertainment
Matisse: The Cut-Outs exhibition attracted 562,000 visitors to the Tate Modern from April to September
art
Life and Style
Models walk the runway at the Tom Ford show during London Fashion Week Spring Summer 2015
fashionLondon Fashion Week 2014
News
Kenny G
news
News
peopleThe black actress has claimed police mistook her for a prostitute when she kissed her white husband
News
i100
Life and Style
techIndian model comes with cricket scores baked in
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week
The fall of Rome? Cash-strapped Italy accused of selling its soul to the highest bidder

The fall of Rome?

Italy's fears that corporate-sponsored restoration projects will lead to the Disneyfication of its cultural heritage
Glasgow girl made good

Glasgow girl made good

Kelly Macdonald was a waitress when she made Trainspotting. Now she’s taking Manhattan
Sequins ahoy as Strictly Come Dancing takes to the floor once more

Sequins ahoy as Strictly takes to the floor once more

Judy Murray, Frankie Bridge and co paired with dance partners
Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Alexander Wang pumps it up at New York Fashion Week
The landscape of my imagination

The landscape of my imagination

Author Kate Mosse on the place that taught her to tell stories