Back to list

Hsieh only Taiwanese to advance in singles at Wimbledon

2012/06/26 14:17:18

Taipei, June 26 (CNA) The four Taiwanese entered in Wimbledon singles draws this year all played their first round matches Monday, but only one emerged victorious.

Hsieh Su-wei, who still has a legitimate chance to earn a slot in the Olympics, defeated France's Virginie Razzano 6-2, 6-4 in 82 minutes in a first-round women's singles match.

Hsieh, playing in the women's singles at Wimbledon for the fourth time but the first since 2008, equaled her previous best showing by reaching the second round, where she will face world No. 75 Stephanie Foretz Gacon of France, who upset 29th-seed Monica Niculescu of Romania.

The 26-year-old had expected a tough match against Razzano, who upset Serena Williams at the French Open last month, remembering from a previous doubles match that the world No. 91 was strong from the baseline and had a good forehand.

But Hsieh, currently ranked 63rd in the world, said she served well (getting in 72 percent of her first serves to only 55 percent for her opponent) and played well overall and was very happy to move into the next round.

The other three Taiwanese players, Lu Yen-hsun and Jimmy Wang in men's singles and Chang Kai-chen in women's singles, were all ousted, with Lu's loss the most disappointing.

Playing world No. 48 American Ryan Harrison, Lu got off to a strong start and seemed to be in control of the match, but an injured groin and a spate of errant volleys cost him in a 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 loss.

Wang, ranked 207th and in the main singles draw at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time since Wimbledon in 2007, was edged out by 17th-seed Fernando Verdasco of Spain 7-6 (3), 6-4, 7-5 in a match that turned on a handful of points.

Finally, Chang, who did well to emerge from qualifiers, lost to Andrea Hlavackova of the Czech Republic 6-1, 6-2.

Though Hsieh is now focusing on her second-round match, she is also keeping an eye out for her Olympic fate.

Starting out the year ranked 172nd, she seemed an unlikely candidate for a slot in the Olympic singles competition.

But after a strong run in tournaments in Southeast Asia, she catapulted up the rankings and ended up ranked 65th on the Olympic cut-off date, just three spots away from an automatic place in the London Games.

Hsieh felt she had a good chance of earning a wild card berth in the women's singles at the London Games, but she won't know until June 28, when the International Tennis Federation releases the official entry list for the Olympic tennis tournaments.

Hsieh said she has represented Taiwan at the Asian Games and in Federation Cup play but that representing her country at the Olympics would be truly special.

Lu automatically qualified for the men's singles at the London Games by virtue of his ranking on the cut-off date of June 11.

(By Jennifer Huang and I-Ling Chen)