Sara Errani committed only five unforced errors Thursday in beating Anne Keothavong of Britain 6-1, 6-1 at Wimbledon.
The 25-year-old Errani, an Italian who has blossomed in Grand Slam competition this year, matched her best Wimbledon showing by advancing to the third round. She was the French Open runner-up this month to Maria Sharapova, and she’s 12-2 in major tournaments in 2012.
She began this year with a career record of 15-17 at majors.
Playing the day’s first match on Court 2, the 10-seeded Errani erased all three break points she faced and won in 61 minutes. That was a gruelling effort compared with Wednesday, when she played only one point to complete a victory suspended overnight because of rain.
The fourth day of play began with sunshine and temperatures heading into the low 80s (high 20s Celsius).
Novak Djokovic had another late night underneath the Centre Court roof Wednesday but made sure he didn’t have to stay quite as long as two years ago, wrapping up a 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 victory over American Ryan Harrison in just under two hours.
The top-ranked Djokovic is in the Wimbledon history books for having won the match with the latest finish ever in a tournament that began in 1877, a five-set victory over Olivier Rochus that ended at 10-59 p.m. in the first round in 2010.
“It was a different condition,” the defending champion said. “It was a really enjoyable match.”
The match had a late starting time as it was the fourth of the day to be played on Centre Court instead of the regular three as Wimbledon played a bit of catch-up because of rain delays.
Roger Federer needed less than 80 minutes to wrap up an easy win in the first, playing in front of Prince Charles, who made his first visit to the tournament since 1970. Caroline Wozniacki then wasted two match points before losing in three sets to Tamira Paszek of Austria in a first-round match that had been suspended on Tuesday. Kim Clijsters reached the third round with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Andrea Hlavackova.
By the time Djokovic was wrapping up his match, there was total darkness outside the Centre Court, where floodlights illuminated the white retractable roof and hundreds of seats were gaping empty as some fans had already gone home.
That didn’t take away from the experience for Djokovic.
“Every time I step on Centre Court you can feel the different energy from any other tournament,” he said. “There’s a lot of tradition and history and champions who have made history on this court, so I’m trying to enjoy every single moment of it.”