Kerber out, Niemeier and Maria on

Jule Niemeier kept touching her heart, Tatjana Maria had tears in her eyes when she thought about her family – Angelique Kerber, on the other hand, experienced great frustration. In contrast to the two tournament surprises, the 2018 winner failed at the grass classic in Wimbledon and missed the round of 16 with the 4: 6, 5: 7 against the Belgian Elise Mertens. “I’m happy for both of them,” said Kerber about Niemeier and Maria. “I’m really excited to see how the journey continues for them both here this year.”

Niemeier and Maria continued their fabulous series of successes and are each among the top 16 for the first time in a Grand Slam tennis tournament. The 22-year-old Niemeier defeated the Ukrainian Lessia Zurenko 6: 4, 3: 6, 6 in a nerve thriller on Friday :3 and confirmed her previous success against world number three Anett Kontaveit from Estonia.

Maria throws out number five

“It just took a load off my heart, that had nothing to do with the match two days ago today,” said Niemeier about her jubilant gesture. “I’m just really happy that I ended up winning the match, even if I didn’t play my best tennis.”

Maria, twelve years her senior, created a big surprise and won 6:3, 7:5 against world number five Maria Sakkari from Greece. In her previous nine Wimbledon attempts, she had never gotten past the third round.

Joy and relief for Jule Niemeier after her success over the Ukrainian Zurenko.

Joy and relief for Jule Niemeier after her success over the Ukrainian Zurenko.

Image: dpa

“It’s hard to find words. I’m here for the first time with my two children,” said Maria on the pitch, completely overwhelmed. Almost 15 months after the birth of her second daughter Cecilia, she achieved the greatest Grand Slam success of her long career. “It’s such a special place for me. Here I played pregnant. To be able to do this now with my family, there are no words for it. I’m just happy.” In the second set, Maria caught up 2:5 against Sakkari, who was five seeded, and used her second match point after 90 minutes. Now she meets the Latvian Jelena Ostapenko.

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