Wednesday, July 4, 2018

McDonald survives Wimbledon marathon

Mackenzie McDonald, a 23-year-old San Francisco Bay
Area product, reached the third round of a Grand Slam
tournament for the first time. Photo by Paul Bauman
   Mackenzie McDonald played another Grand Slam marathon today.
   This time, he won.
   The 23-year-old product of Piedmont in the San Francisco Bay Area outlasted Nicolas Jarry of Chile 7-6 (5), 5-7, 3-6, 6-2, 11-9 in 3 hours, 31 minutes at Wimbledon.
   McDonald lost to Grigor Dimitrov 8-6 in the fifth set in the second round of the Australian Open in January. Dimitrov was ranked third at the time.
   The 5-foot-10 (1.78-meter) McDonald survived 24 aces from the 6-foot-6 (1.98-meter) Jarry, ranked 66th, to reach the third round of a Slam for the first time.
   "It's crazy. I can't believe it," McDonald, who will earn at least 100,000 British pounds ($132,290) and crack the top 100 for the first time, marveled in a Tennis Channel interview. "I've played some good matches so far, and I'm stoked to be in the third round."
   On the women's side, Ekaterina Makarova of Russia ousted No. 2 seed Caroline Wozniacki 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 in the second round. Wozniacki, who won her first Grand Slam title in this year's Australian Open, has never advanced past the fourth round at Wimbledon in 12 appearances.
   McDonald trained with his friend Roger Federer before Wimbledon.
   "I got to see him before the grass season this year," McDonald said. "It was nice of him to invite me. It's a tough opportunity to pass up. He was really nice to me and taught me a little bit while I was there, so it was great."
   McDonald, who's now based in Orlando, Fla., next will play either No. 3 seed Marin Cilic, another 6-foot-6 (1.98-meter) player, or Guido Pella of Argentina for the first time. Cilic, the 2014 U.S. Open champion and 2017 Wimbledon runner-up, leads Pella 6-3, 6-1, 3-4 in a rain-suspended match.
   No. 11 seed Sam Querrey, a 30-year-old San Francisco native, beat 32-year-old Sergiy Stakhovsky of Ukraine 7-6 (4), 6-3, 6-3. Stakhovsky stunned Federer in the second round at Wimbledon five years ago.
   Querrey, a Wimbledon semifinalist last year, will face unseeded Gael Monfils, 31, of France on Friday. Monfils, ranked No. 44 after reaching a career-high No. 6 in 2016, is 2-0 against Querrey. This will be their first meeting on grass.
   No. 1 seed Federer, seeking his record-extending ninth Wimbledon crown before turning 37 on Aug. 8, and No. 13 Milos Raonic, the 2016 Wimbledon runner-up to Andy Murray, advanced in straight sets. Raonic, though, struggled to beat Australian John Millman, who won the 2015 Aptos and 2010 Sacramento Challengers, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (4), 7-6 (4).
   Ruben Bemelmans, a 30-year-old Belgian left-hander, leads No. 9 seed John Isner 1-6, 4-6, 7-6 (6), 7-6 (3), 4-3.
   Bemelmans won a $25,000 Futures tournament in Burlingame, near San Francisco International Airport, in 2016. Isner has never advanced past the third round at Wimbledon in nine previous appearances. He defeated Nicolas Mahut 70-68 in the fifth set in the longest match in tennis history in the first round at Wimbledon in 2010.
   Meanwhile, No. 10 seed Madison Keys, who won last year's Stanford title, and No. 25 Serena Williams, seeking her eighth Wimbledon title, won in straight sets. Both are entered in the inaugural Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic, July 30-Aug. 5 at San Jose State.
   So is Victoria Azarenka, the 2010 Stanford champion who lost to No. 7 seed Karolina Pliskova 6-3, 6-3.

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