Wimbledon 2013: The hopes of a nation... Britain's Laura Robson eases home pressure by escaping favourite status

 

Wimbledon

Laura Robson has been learning to cope with fame ever since she won the girls' title here five years ago, but the 19-year-old Briton's celebrity status will reach a new peak if she beats Kaia Kanepi here on Court One this afternoon.

Already the first British woman to reach the fourth round since Sam Smith in 1998, Robson is now one win away from becoming the first home player to appear in a Wimbledon women's quarter-final since Jo Durie in 1994. If Robson does make it to the last eight she will face Serena Williams, assuming the world No 1 and defending champion disposes of Sabine Lisicki on Monday.

At least it helps Robson that Andy Murray is also through to the second week to share the spotlight. "I think he is taking most of it," Robson said. "He is doing amazingly and playing really, really well. It would be great if he manages to get through the later stages of the tournament, but I'm just going to focus on my match on Monday."

Had Robson seen much of Murray, her mixed doubles partner at last summer's Olympics? "I saw him on Saturday morning and stole five minutes of his practice time," she said. "[Agnieszka] Radwanska kicked me off my court before I had finished serving. Andy was doing all his balance and things like that, so I just took his court for a couple of minutes."

Murray's own advice to Robson on Sunday was simple. "I think you just concentrate on one match," he said. "She's 19 years old, so just give her a bit of time to enjoy her tennis."

As if coping with the pressure at her home Grand Slam tournament has not been a big enough challenge for Robson, this is also her first Wimbledon away from her parents, who recently moved to Greece in connection with her father's job as an oil executive.

"I am getting used to it," Robson said. "My mum was here the week before last and the rest of my family are here now, so I'm doing OK." She added: "It must be quite stressful for parents in a week like this. My dad is pretty chilled so he is taking it all in his stride, but my mum is quite happy to watch on TV."

Robson, who at the end of Wimbledon will become the first British woman to be ranked in the world's top 30 since Durie in 1987, has equalled her career-best performance at a Grand Slam tournament by making the fourth round – she reached the same stage of last year's US Open – but needed to come from behind in her latest match on Saturday to do so.

She was second best for a set and a half against New Zealand's Marina Erakovic, who blew her chance when serving for the match in the second set. From 5-3 down Robson won eight matches in a row to take control, eventually winning 1-6, 7-5, 6-3.

Kanepi, the world No 46, will pose a significant threat. The 28-year-old from Estonia, who knocked out the No 7 seed Angelique Kerber in the second round and the grass-court specialist Alison Riske in the third, has a big game, not dissimilar to Robson's. She is faster and fitter than she has been in the past and also has plenty of experience. She reached a career-high No 15 in the world last year but has been rebuilding her ranking following injury problems.

"I was away for half a year and came back this April," Kanepi said. "In the beginning it's tough, of course, the first few tournaments, but I knew that I can play really well. My body has not forgotten things. It's been a good comeback for me."

Robson will not be underestimating the size of her task. "She has always played really well here and has made the quarters before," the world No 38 said. "I watched her match against Tara Moore in the first round and I watched her on Saturday evening."

The Briton added: "It's definitely going to be a tough match. I'm happy to have got through Friday and Saturday, though, because I went into those matches as favourite, which doesn't usually happen for me in a Slam. I put a lot of pressure on myself for the last two matches to do well."

Live blog: Click here for game-by-game coverage as Laura Robson attempts to reach the quarter-finals with a victory over Kaia Kanepi followed by Andy Murray against Mikhail Youzhny

Sport
Lionel Messi pictured after reaching the final
world cup 2014
Sport
Lionel Messi and Thomas Muller have shone brightest for Argentina and Germany respectively on their way to the World Cup final
Sport
Brazilian fans watch the match for third place between Brazil and Netherlands
Brazil 0 Netherlands 3: Dutch pile on the misery in third place playoff
Arts and Entertainment
TV The follow-up documentary that has got locals worried
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
'Deep Breath' is Peter Capaldi's first full-length adventure as the twelfth Doctor
TVFirst episode of new series has ended up on the internet
News
Ian Thorpe had Rio 2016 in his sights
people
Arts and Entertainment
Original Netflix series such as Orange Is The New Black are to benefit from a 'substantial' increase in investment
TVHoax announcement had caused outrage
Life and Style
Swimsuit, £245, by Agent Provocateur
fashion

Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes

News
Monkey business: Serkis is the king of the non-human character performance
peopleFirst Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
Arts and Entertainment
Blackman: Landscape of children’s literature does not reflect the cultural diversity of young people
booksMalorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
News
One Direction star Harry Styles who says he has no plans to follow his pal Cara Delevingne down the catwalk.
peopleManagement confirms rumours singer is going it alone are false
Voices
Mrs Brown's Boy: D'Movie has been a huge commercial success
voicesWhen it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Arts and Entertainment
Curtain calls: Madani Younis
theatreMadani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Life and Style
Douglas McMaster says the food industry is ‘traumatised’
food + drinkSilo in Brighton will have just six staple dishes on the menu every day, including one meat option, one fish, one vegan, and one 'wild card'
Sport
Mario Balotelli, Divock Origi, Loic Remy, Wilfried Bony and Karim Benzema
transfersBony, Benzema and the other transfer targets
Life and Style
Once a month, waistline watcher Suran steps into a 3D body scanner that maps his body shape and records measurements with pinpoint accuracy
techFrom heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
News
Soft power: Matthew Barzun
peopleThe US Ambassador to London, Matthew Barzun, holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence. He says it's all part of the job
Sport
Joe Root and James Anderson celebrate their record-beaking partnership
cricketEngland's last-wicket stand against India rewrites the history books
Caption competition
Caption competition
Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor
Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy: Was the otter man the wildlife champion he appeared to be?

Otter man Gavin Maxwell's bitter legacy

The aristocrat's eccentric devotion to his pets inspired a generation. But our greatest living nature writer believes his legacy has been quite toxic
Joanna Rowsell: The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia

Joanna Rowsell: 'I wear my wig to look normal'

The World Champion cyclist on breaking her collarbone, shattering her teeth - and dealing with alopecia
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef gives raw ingredients a lift with his quick marinades

Bill Granger's quick and delicious marinades

Our chef's marinades are great for weekend barbecuing, but are also a delicious way of injecting flavour into, and breaking the monotony of, weekday meals
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014 preview: Why Brazilians don't love their neighbours Argentina any more

Anyone but Argentina – why Brazilians don’t love their neighbours any more

The hosts will be supporting Germany in today's World Cup final, reports Alex Bellos
The Open 2014: Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?

The Open 2014

Time again to ask that major question - can Lee Westwood win at last?