Wimbledon Day 6 Recap: Rybakina and Sabalenka dominate

(Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images) /

Saturday at the 2023 Wimbledon Championships saw rain sneak its way back into affairs. However, before play was suspended for the day, there was some great tennis played. Reigning Champion Elena Rybakina and No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka both looked very impressive as they earned 4th-round spots.

Rybakina was in fine form as she raced by the home favorite Katie Boulter 6-1, 6-1, Another routine day at the office for a player that is becoming very comfortable at this venue. Sabalenka felled Anna Blinkova in comfortable fashion 6-2, 6-3. Sabalenka is playing herself nicely into form as she looks to finally get over the hump at Wimbledon.

No. 9 Petra Kvitova and No. 25 Madison Keys both were also victorious in straight sets as the Women’s action today was very much by the book.

Recapping everything from Wimbledon Day 6

The only women’s match to go the distance was between last year’s finalist, Ons Jabeur, and the 2019 US Open Champion Bianca Andreescu. Jabeur was able to get the best of her Canadian adversary as she recovered from a set down to bring home the 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 win and make her way into the Round of 16.

Carlos Alcaraz, forever getting more and more comfortable on the grass, stood down the challenge of the heavy-hitting Chilean and 25-seed Nicolas Jarry. In what was a tight affair during most of the match, the Spaniard was able to overcome him in 4 sets.

Jarry acquitted himself to the confines of Center Court very well. He is in the midst of his best season on tour and he played with confidence from recent results. Jarry did have a break lead in the 4th set, but Alcaraz willed himself across the finish line.

A hard-luck draw for the No. 19 seed Alexander Zverev as he faced the former Wimbledon finalist, and currently unseeded, Matteo Berrettini. Both big men put on a serving clinic, but it was the Italian Berrettini that pulled through in seemingly every big moment to secure the 6-3, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5) win and a 4th-round place. Zverev will feel hard done by, as he played well but was the victim of an unlucky matchup at the wrong time.

Speaking of tiebreaks and fine serving, the resurgent Chris Eubanks continued to impress the tennis world as he worked his way through Chris O’Connell in a very tight 7-6 (5), 7-6 (3), 7-6 (2) result. The big-hitting American moves onto the 4th round.

No. 5 Stefanos Tsitispas and No. 3 Daniil Medvedev were also winners on Saturday as both men continue on their quest to dispel the notion they can’t play on grass.

In what was clearly the match of the day, the ever-feisty No. 6 Holger Rune needed to dig deep and then some to overcome the 31-seed Alejandro Davidovich Fokina 6-3, 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 7-6 (8). Both men are known shotmakers on the tour and this match was no different as they put each other through the ringer.

After Rune saved 2 match points, the final set tiebreak was 8-8 when Davidovich Fokina stunningly tried an underhanded serve to the middle of the box. Rune pounced and smoked a forehand winner. This move left everyone befuddled as it was clearly not the right moment to try something so outrageous.

16th-seeded American Tommy Paul was knocked out by Jiri Lechecka in 5 sets. Paul was 2 sets to love down before winning two tiebreaks, but he couldn’t sustain this level in the 5th as he succumbed to defeat.

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Finally, another American looks to be in danger as 10-seed Frances Tiafoe was trailing No. 21 Grigor Dimitrov 6-2, 6-3, 2-1 when play was suspended. The ever-smooth Dimitrov has been playing at an elite level this week and it was showing again Saturday. Tiafoe will be happy for the pause and they will resume on Sunday along with more action from London.