Ons Jabeur was kept on court for more than hour – but only just – as the speedy Tunisian dispatched former junior number one Diane Parry 6-2, 6-3 on Friday to reach the fourth round at Wimbledon.
The world number two has shown little mercy during her progress to the third round, spending less than two hours on court. Had she not been broken by Parry when serving for the first set at 5-0 up, she would have made it into the last 16 in less than three hours on court during the first five days of the grasscourt major.
That break not only earned 19-year-old Parry, one of four Frenchwomen to reach the third round, a rousing ovation from the Centre Court crowd but boosted her confidence as she raised her game to hit some sublime one-handed backhand winners.
Although the teenager could not rescue the first set, which Jabeur sealed with an ace, she stayed toe-to-toe with the third seed in the second set until 3-3.
It was at this point Jabeur moved in to deliver the knockout punch as she broke Parry to love and moments later she was celebrating her passage into the fourth round — having been kept on court for 68 minutes.
She will next meet either 2018 Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber or Belgian 24th seed Elise Mertens.
Briton Watson makes fourth round of a Grand Slam at 43rd attempt
Britain’s Heather Watson reached the fourth round of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time in 43 attempts over 12 years as she beat Slovenia’s Kaja Juvan 7-6(6), 6-2 in front of a barely believing crowd on Wimbledon Court one.
Watson, 30, has slipped to 121st in the world rankings and fourth in Britain and although she has tasted notable success in doubles, she has never been able to sustain a challenge in singles at the top level, her best Wimbledon performances being reaching the third round three times.
Great Britain’s Heather Watson celebrates winning against Slovenia’s Kaja Juvan during their third-round match at Wimbledon in London on Friday. – GETTY IMAGES
She came through an awkward first set full of slices and drop shots against 21-year-old Juvan and did not let her head drop after blowing three set points in the tiebreak before taking it 8-6 on a double fault by the 60th-ranked Slovenian.
Energised, Watson blasted to a 5-0 lead in the second set, adding power and confidence to her groundstrokes, and though Juvan launched a late rally, Watson prevailed to cap a week to remember in which she has been on court five days in a row after her first two matches ran into second days.