Both number one seeds saw action today on the first day of Wimbledon. Williams faced a young Russian that gave her an unexpected challenge. It was not her best start; perhaps the long lay off since winning her 20th major title was partly to blame. However, we have come to expect Williams to bounce back from rocky beginnings and today was no exception. Although Gasparyan had her on the ropes for most of the first set, Williams fought through the first round tension and the brilliant play from the youngster to get the 64, 61 victory. The realization of what she was about to accomplish dawned and Gasparyan lost her focus and the match. Gasparyan had chances in the second to get back in the match, but by then Williams had found her range. Williams will assess what she has to work on going forward; however, she can breathe a little easier as she denied Gasparyan the first round upset.
Likewise, it was not his best performance and Kohlschreiber had an opportunity to get the upset. Yet, that’s irrelevant now as he failed to take advantage of the less than stellar performance by Djokovic. Perhaps that’s why higher ranked players win their matches. That small percentage of doubt their opponents have when they step on court against them, works in their favor. Today, Djokovic won 64, 64, 64 not because he played well, but because Kohlschreiber doubted his ability to beat the number one ranked player. Djokovic knows he will have to improve his play as the tournament continues if he wants to defend his title.