Andy Murray restored some order as the climactic second week of upset—marred Wimbledon began, with the second seed reaching the quarter—finals on Monday with a 6—4, 7—6 (7—5), 6—1 defeat of Russian Mikhail Youzhny.
Top seed Novak Djokovic got past a potentially dangerous Tommy Haas, dispatching the German 13th seed 6—1, 6—4, 7—6 (7—4) but threatened when he was broken while serving for victory at 5—3 in the third.
“I knew I had a bad record against him on grass. He had beaten me both times we played on it,” said the Serb, who will play seventh seed Tomas Berdych as the Czech defeated Bernard Tomic 7—6 (7—4), 6—7 (5—7), 6—4, 6—4.
“It was a tough challenge for me but I played a really good match. I had to work for my games after winning the first set easily,” he said, acknowledging the setback when he served for the the match.
Murray will now will play Fernando Verdasco after the Spaniard beat Kenny De Schepper 6—4, 6—4, 6—4.
Murray came from 5—3 down in the second set against Youzhny and made sure of victory with a dominating third set.
Murray cannot take any match for granted, especially at this roller—coaster edition.
“Serena (Williams) lost today, Rafa’s lost, Roger’s lost. These guys and girls are better players than me, achieved more than me. If they can lose, so can I.” Murray added: “In the first few rounds I was more nervous. I felt calmer before this match. Now I’ll just concentrate on the next one.” Youzhny had his chances, Murray said, including at the beginning of the third set, “but once I got ahead in the third I concentrated very hard not to let him back in like I did in the second set.” Murray was joined in the last eight by Spain’s fourth seed David Ferrer, who completed a 6—7 (3—7), 7—6 (8—6), 6—1, 6—1 comeback over Croatian Ivan Dodig.
Argentine number eight Juan Del Potro shook off a knee problem after a fall in his previous match to defeat Italy’s Andreas Seppi 6—4, 7—6 (7—2), 6—3.
A pair of Poles stood tall after reaching the last eight.
Jerzy Janowicz held off Austrian Jurgen Melzer 3—6, 7—6 (7—1), 6—4, 4—6, 6—4, while Lukasz Kubot beat Frenchman Adrian Mannarino 4—6, 6—3, 3—6, 6—3, 6—4.
In women’s play, Germany’s Sabine Lisicki produced another huge shock with her takedown of top seed Williams 6—2, 1—6, 6—4.
The 24th—ranked winner, twice a semi—finalist, added top seed Williams to Wimbledon victim’s list of former French Open champions after defeating ex—Roland Garros winners Svetlana Kuznetsova, Li Na and Maria Sharapova in previous years.
“It gave me a little more energy knowing that she won the French Open and I beat the French Open champion three times in a row in my last three appearances, so ...” said Lisicki.
The event lost Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal in the first week, along with Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka on the women’s side.
Lisicki fell to her face on the grass in disbelief after she artfully sent a forehand return deep into a corner.
The winner stormed through the opening set, was rolled in the second by Williams and battled back from a break in the third after trailing 3—1. Williams saved a match point in the final game but otherwise had little to offer as Lisicki ran her ragged in just over two hours.
“It feels very good. Obviously I went into the match feeling that I could win,” said Lisicki. “I played very good the first three matches and I felt ready for this match.” Williams took her defeat on the chin. “It’s not a shock. She plays really good on grass. She has a massive, massive serve. It’s definitely not an easy match playing her at Wimbledon.” Sixth—seeded Li Na beat Italian 11th seed Roberta Vinci 6—2, 6—0.
The 2011 winner and eighth seed Petra Kvitova found her grass rhythm in a defeat of Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro 7—6 (7—5), 6—3.
The Czech next plays Belgian Kirsten Flipkens, a 7—6 (7—2), 6—3 winner over Italy’s Flavia Pennetta.
British hopes took a hit as Laura Robson lost to Kaia Kanepi 7—6 (8—6), 7—5. French 15th seed Marion Bartoli advanced over Italian Karin Knapp 6—2, 6—3, while Sloane Stephens kept an American in the mix by defeating Monica Puig of Puerto Rico 4—6, 7—5, 6—1.