By Andreas Vou
Marcos Baghdatis has been knocked out of Wimbledon in the second round after a 7-6, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 defeat at the hands of Argentina’s Leonardo Mayer.
Baghdatis came off the back of a hard-fought victory against Dustin Brown in the first round, defeating the German over four sets. Many believed that Mayer would have proven a far easier challenge for the former world no.8 but that was not to be the case.
Going into the match, the 2006 Wimbledon semi-finalist was the favourite but it was evident from the Argentine’s first round win over Andreas Seppi, who was ranked 28 places above him in the ATP rankings, that it would be no walk in the park for Baghdatis.
The Cypriot outplayed his opponent in large parts of the first set especially in his own service play but Mayer made crucial points count where they most mattered and came away with the match’s first set via a tie-break.
Baghdatis responded in the best possible way, showing more aggression in the second set which he eventually won 6-4 to level the match.
However, hopes of a turnaround were quickly dashed as Mayer proved superior to Baghdatis in all areas from there on after. The 27-year-old Argentine blitzed through the third set 6-1, leaving himself just one set away from his first ever third round Wimbledon match up.
Despite a decent effort, Baghdatis could no longer keep up with the pace as Mayer broke the Cypriot’s serve to go 4-3 ahead, which ultimately proved crucial in the fourth and decisive set.
In the next round, Mayer will face Russia’s Andrey Kuznetsov who pulled off a surprise victory against the no.7 seed David Ferrer of Spain in an enthralling five-set encounter.
For Baghdatis, while he certainly would have been aiming to reach further in the tournament, his form leading up to Wimbledon, as well as his display against Brown in the previous round, should give the 29-year-old confidence to continue his resurgence.