Live Commentary: Novak Djokovic vs. Radek Stepanek - as it happened

Serbia's Novak Djokovic reacts after scoring a point against Kazakhstan's Andrey Golubev during their men's singles first round match on day one of the 2014 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on June 23,
© Getty Images
Live coverage of top seed Novak Djokovic's second-round Wimbledon match against world number 38 Radek Stepanek.

Novak Djokovic survived a scare against Radek Stepanek to reach the third round at Wimbledon.

The top seed comfortably won the first two sets, but the Czech pulled one back in a tiebreak in the third.

The Serb was unable to break his opponent again in the fourth as they went to another tiebreak, but Djokovic came out on top second time around.

Read how all the action unfolded below:


Sort:
Newest
Oldest
4.02pmGood afternoon! World number two Novak Djokovic should be heading out onto Centre Court with Radek Stepanek in the next few minutes for their second-round clash at SW19.

4.03pmDjokovic is obviously the favourite, but the Czech is always a threat on grass, and has shown good form already this year by knocking Andy Murray out at Queen's earlier this month, so we could be in for a good contest.

4.06pmThis will be the 12th time that Djokovic and Stepanek have played on the ATP tour. The 35-year-old has won just one of his previous 11 meetings against the Serb, which was on an indoor hard court back in 2006. Since then , Djokovic has won nine meetings in a row against the Czech.

4.08pmAs I mentioned in the intro, Djokovic had a relatively easy start to the tournament, racing past Kazakhstan's Andrey Golubev 6-0 6-1 6-4. Stepanek also came through in straight sets, knocking out Pablo Cuevas 6-2 6-4 6-4.

4.12pmThe players are now on court and taking part in their warm-ups, so while that takes place, let's have a closer look at their respective records at Wimbledon. Stepanek reached the last eight in 2006, but has only been beyond the third round once since then. By contrast, Djokovic has reached at least the semi-finals in five of his nine previous appearances at SW19, with one title and one final defeat under his belt. His only second round exit came in 2008 when he was beaten by Marat Safin.

4.15pmThe good news is it looks like there will be no need for the roof on Centre Court this afternoon as it's nice bright sunshine around the grounds of the All England Club at the moment.

4.15pmRight then, the players are ready, with Djokovic to serve first.

Djokovic 1-0* StepanekIt's a solid start for Djokovic as he fires an ace past Stepanek with the first point of the match, which the Czech challenges, but is was a whisker in. The top seed as to make a challenge himself two point later and gets the call right to notch up another ace as he quickly wraps up the opening game.

Djokovic *1-1 StepanekStepanek finds some bid serves at the start of the game but loses hit footing on the third point. He winces a bit as he really turned his ankle quite a bit, but he manages to complete the game without dropping a point thanks to a couple more powerful serves.

Djokovic 2-1* StepanekDjokovic takes the first two points of the game but then suffers a slip himself while trying to come into the net to return a drop shot from the world number 38. Stepanek moves well around the court to take the game to deuce, but Djokovic hits an ace before Stepanek returns the next point to the net to let his opponent hold serve.

Djokovic *2-2 StepanekDjokovic gets the better of his opponent in a lengthy rally to start the game, but mis-hits a volley while trying to return a drop shot on the next point. Stepanek mixes his shots up a bit coming into the net to hit a winner past the world number two before Djokovic hits the ball into the net to hand the Czech the game.

Djokovic 3-2* StepanekDjokovic leaves Stepanek rooted to the spot and he sweeps a forehand past his opponent before coming into the net for a neat volley on the next point to seal the game. It's been pretty comfortable on serve for the Serb so far, but he's yet to really take it to Stepanek during the Czech's service games.

Djokovic *3-3 StepanekThe world number two pulls out a couple of big returns to clinch the first two points of the game. Stepanek tries everything to get a point back, but sees two volley and an overhead lob returned before eventually forcing his forehand past Djokovic. The game heads to deuce, but the top seed makes a couple of errors to allow Stepanek to secure the game without facing a break point.

Djokovic 4-3* StepanekIt looks like being a relatively comfortable game against for Djokovic as he takes a 40-15 lead, but Stepanek continued to pose a threat at the net to pull it back to deuce. However, the Serb digs deep to find a big serve that Stepanek can only slice into the net before the Czech sends a volley wide to let Djokovic win the game.

Djokovic *4-4 StepanekDjokovic battles hard to try to set up a chance for him to get a break on the board, but Stepanek hits a big serve before getting the better of the world number in an exchange of shots at the net. Stepanek has made some stunning volleys so far in this set.

Djokovic 5-4* StepanekStepanek comes in from the baseline to take his returns early and put his opponent under pressure, earning himself two break point. Djokovic hits a fast serve to save the first before forcing deuce after a string of well-timed groundstrokes. He misses his first chance to win the game when he fires a backhand wide, but he creates another chance and manages to escape with his serve intact as Stepanek hits the net with his forehand. That will be a bitter disappointment for the world number 38 who surely must have thought he had the game in the bag at 40-15.

4.58pmSET! Novak Djokovic 6-4 Radek Stepanek

4.59pmAs it so often the way when a player has to work hard to hold their serve, they go on to claim a break in the next came, and in this case it gives Djokovic the first set. Stepanek did manage to save two set points, but it only made the top seed work hard as he sealed the game and the set with a forehand down the line.

Djokovic 6-4 1-0* StepanekIt's a reasonably comfortable start to the second set for Djokovic as he drops just a point, and hits another ace past his opponent. Stepanek is showing a few signs of frustration after losing out in the opener, but he'll need to compose himself for his own service game next.

Djokovic 6-4 *1-1 StepanekStepanek continues to combine his big serves with some fine play at the net as he easily wraps up his first service game of the second set.

Djokovic 6-4 2-1* StepanekDjokovic looks pretty untouchable on serve at the moment as he races through another game. The Serb fires two aces past his opponent, who fails to take a single point off the Djokovic serve.

Djokovic 6-4 *2-2 StepanekStepanek manages to root Djokovic to the spot behind the baseline as he smashes a superb forehand past the world number two before opening up a 40-0 lead with an overhead lob. A double fault from Stepanek keeps the top seed in the game for a few moments longer, but a long return from the Serb on the next point keep the second set on serve.

Djokovic 6-4 3-2* StepanekDjokovic notches up another comfortable hold as Stepanek completely mis-hits a lob, returning it to his own side of the net, before Djokovic wraps the game up with a smooth cross-court forehand.

Djokovic 6-4 *4-2 StepanekBREAK! Djokovic looks like he's just gone up a gear as he dictates the play from the baseline with some well-placed forehands, including one right on the line to give his two break point, which he converts when Stepanek slices his backhand into the net.

Djokovic 6-4 5-2* StepanekIt looks like it's going to be another clinical service game for Djokovic as he serves his 10th ace on the way to a 40-0 lead. However, the world number two makes his first double fault of the match to keep Stepanek in contention before letting his frustrations get the better of him as he fires a couple of shots long to give Stepeanek deuce. However, Djokovic forces advantage with another ace before the Czech mis-hit his return to give Djokovic the game. He had looked like he was flying in this second set, but he certainly didn't look at his best in that game.

Djokovic 6-4 *5-3 StepanekStepanek has to dig deep as Djokovic makes a series of fantastic returns to bring up set point. However, the Czech manages to take the game to deuce before finding a pair of big serves to see out the game, and force Djokovic to try to serve it out next.

5.30pmSET! Novak Djokovic 6-4 6-3 Radek Stepanek

5.32pmIt's another game where Djokovic is completely in control as he seals the set with a cross-court volley. It results in Stepanek taking a tumble as he dives to try and make the return, leaving him with a grazed knee. As a result, the Czech has asked for the trainer to come onto the court and give him some treatment.

5.34pmWhile Stepanek is seen to by the trainer, let's look at some of the stats from the second set. Both players made a double fault, but Djokovic served eight aces. The world number two won 94% of the points on his first serve, compared to just 77% for Stepanek. The Serb hit 15 winners and made four unforced errors, while Stepanek had six winners and four errors.

5.35pmLuckily for Stepanek, it doesn't look like he's done anything worse than just cut his knee, so he should be ready to continue once the trainer has applied a dressing to the wound.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 *0-1 StepanekWell the knee certainly doesn't seem to be troubling Stepanek as moves around behind the baseline effortlessly to ease through the first game of the first set. He's sticking with his tactic of coming into the net once in a while to keep the top seed on his toes, and it seems to be working well for him at the moment.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 1-1* StepanekDjokovic appears to get the benefit of a strike of the net chord, but Stepanek sprints into the net to make the return and take a 30-0 lead. The Czech appears to be controlling a long rally with Djokovic, stretching the world number two the length of the baseline, but he slices his backhand into the net to allow Djokovic to edge ahead, before a long Stepanek forehand gives the Serb the game.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 *1-2 StepanekStepanek looks like he's throwing everything he's got into this match at the moment but it's working as he forces a couple of mistakes from Djokovic to allow him to hold. At the change of ends, it looks like he's having the dressing on his knee changed.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 2-2* StepanekWell it's not the tidiest service game from Djokovic, but he does enough to keep the set with serve. He has to rely on his second serve as he misses a few first serves, but has enough in his groundstrokes to get the better of Stepanek again.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 *2-3 StepanekStepanek is actually looking the better player at the moment as his easily notches up another game, continuing to pick up points at the net, while Djokovic is showing signs of frustrations as the match has been going on over 90 minutes now.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 3-3* StepanekStepanek looks to make the most of Djokovic's current dip and manages to bring up a break point, but a stunning forehand from the Serb takes the game to deuce. Stepanek gets another chance as he brings up advantage, but can only slice the ball into the net on the next point. After four deuces, Djokovic fires an ace down the middle of the court before following it up with another moments later to seal the game. Stepanek may live to regret that missed opportunity, as Djokovic seems pretty psyched to have come away with the game.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 *3-4 StepanekWell this has turned into a real battle of a third set! It looks like Stepanek is gone at the start of the game as a string of errors allow Djokovic to bring up two break point. However, the world number 35 picks the perfect moment to hit his first ace of the match, before two long efforts from Djokovic give him advantage and seals the game with a cross-court volley at the net. What a set this is turning in to, with both players having to throw absolutely everything at each other for points at the minute.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 4-4* StepanekDjokovic easily picks up the opening couple of points before he is wrong-footed by a powerful backhand from his opponent. However, the top seed wraps it up with a solid forehand winner.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 *4-5 StepanekStepanek picks up his second ace of the match but loses out on the next point following a spectacular rally of shots at the net. At deuce, Stepanek fires down the line before Djokovic sends his forehand long. The top seed will now be serving to stay in the set.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 5-5* StepanekDjokovic certainly isn't going to give this set away as he serves faultlessly to quickly take the game. The set could very well be heading for a tiebreak.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 *5-6 StepanekDjokovic is really trying to stretch his opponent as he attempts to tire the 35-year-old out. He does enough to take the game to deuce, but Stepanek serves an ace down the centre of the court before Djokovic slices a return into the net, ensuring the Stepanek will get at least a tiebreak out of this set.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 6-6 StepanekDjokovic serves up another ace while Stepanek is unable to threaten with his returns, ensuring that the set is heading to a tiebreak!

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *0-1 Stepanek. An ace to start from the Czech.

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *0-2 Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 1-2* Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 2-2* Stepanek. It's all level following a long forehand from Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *3-2 Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *4-2 Stepanek. A big serve from Djokovic forces a poor return from his opponent to make it four points in a row for the top seed.

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 5-2* Stepanek. Another ace for Djokovic!

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 5-3* Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *5-4 Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *5-5 Stepanek. Djokovic stretches Stepanek behind the baseline, but then hits his forehand into the net to level the scores.

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 5-6* Stepanek. A slip from Djokovic gives Stepanek set point on his own serve.

6.37pmSET! Novak Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 Radek Stepanek

6.38pmWhat an entertaining set that was! It really looked like Stepanek was on the ropes at 5-2 down during the tiebreak, but he put the top seed under pressure and forced him into a string of mistakes to pick up a set and keep the match alive.

6.39pmIt has to be said, while Djokovic has probably played the better tennis over the three sets so far, Stepanek thorougly deserved the third, and arguably should have picked up the break earlier on to claim the set without the tiebreak.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 1-0* StepanekStepanek makes a bright start as he picks up the first two points, but loses his head a bit when a challenge doesn't go his way, before the world number two picks out the baseline with a well-placed forehand to seal the game.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 *1-1 StepanekWell it's another tight game, but Stepanek just about does enough to avoid giving away an early break. At deuce, Stepanek fires an ace past his opponent before Djokovic finds the net on the next point.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 2-1* StepanekThere's a huge cheer for Stepanek as he finally wins his first challenge of the match after a forehand was wrongly called out. However, it's not enough to stop Djokovic racing through the game, sealing it with a stunning two-handed effort down the line.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 *2-2 StepanekStepanek is still serving consistently and confidently, making it tricky for Djokovic to attack. An ace gives the Czech a 40-0 lead, but a couple of errors let Djokovic back into the game. However, he sends a powerful effort out wide which the Serb can only return into the net.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 3-2* StepanekDjokovic is cruising on serve again as he eases to a 40-15 lead before getting into a rally with his opponent, who eventually slices his forehand just wide. Stepanek is starting to look pretty tired, but somehow he's still moving around the court really well.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 *3-3 StepanekStepanek continues to look extremely solid on serve as he mixes up his shots with some efforts at the net as well as some groundstrokes, preventing Djokovic from picking up a single point. Already it feels like this set could be heading to same way as the last, ending with a tiebreak.

Djokovic 6-4 6-4 [5]6-7 4-3* StepanekAs good as Stepanek looks during his own service games, he really hasn't been able to test Djokovic in this fourth set, as the top seed quickly rattles through another game. Stepanek gives away a couple of points with long returns before a forehand winner seals it for Djokovic.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 *4-4 StepanekStepanek actually seems to be getting better on serve as he fires another ace past the Serb before sealing the game by flicking a volley past his opponent from close into the net.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 5-4* StepanekDjokovic continues to serve well and is now just one game from a place in the third round, but he'll have to up his game if he's to break Stepanek. The Czech seems to still have plenty of energy left as he hurdles the net on his way back to his chair for the change of ends.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 *5-5 StepanekDjokovic thinks that he has a chance as Stepanek fires wide during the first point, but the world number 38 quickly recovers to lead 40-15 before he is handed the game following a poor drop shot attempt from the Serb.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 6-5* StepanekStepanek is really on the attack as he clearly thinks he can win this set. Despite a couple of errors, he brings up a break point with slices volley, but Djokovic survives a stumble to come into the net and return a drop shot on the next point to bring up deuce. Stepanek ends up on the floor twice in another entertaining exchange but can't quite get his volley back in, although he does force the game back to deuce with a forehand moments later. However, a wide forehand followed by a slice into the net eventually allow Djokovic to hold a compelling game.

Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 6-6 StepanekDjokovic comes out fighting but a sloppy return gives Stepanek a 40-30 lead before he seals it on the next point, so it's another tiebreak.

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 1-0* Stepanek. The Czech appears to have hurt himself diving to try and make a return, but he quickly shakes it off.

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 2-0* Stepanek. Stepanek slips again!

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *2-1 Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *2-2 Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 3-2* Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 4-2* Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *5-2 Stepanek. Djokovic extends his lead to three points with a brilliant forehand return to the baseline.

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *5-3 Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 5-4* Stepanek

TIEBREAK!Djokovic 5-5* Stepanek. He pulls is back with a huge serve!

TIEBREAK!Djokovic *6-5 Stepanek. Stepanek slices into the net to give Djokovic match point on his own serve.

7.33pmGAME, SET & MATCH! Novak Djokovic 6-4 6-3 [5]6-7 7-6[5] Radek Stepanek

7.35pmAfter over three hours on court, Djokovic finally gets past world number 38 Radek Stepanek to reach the third round at Wimbledon. He had to use a challenge at match point as his match-winning effort was initially called out, but hawkeye ensured that he got the point.

7.35pmThe crowd gives a standing ovation to both players as they make their way off court together.

7.36pmNext up for Djokovic will be France's Gilles Simon following his straight-sets win over Robin Haase of the Netherlands earlier.

7.37pmWell that's all from Centre Court today, but stick around to read our match report and reaction from today's matches. Thanks for joining me this evening, goodbye.

Serbia's Novak Djokovic reacts after scoring a point against Kazakhstan's Andrey Golubev during their men's singles first round match on day one of the 2014 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on June 23,
Read Next:
Result: Djokovic romps through at Wimbledon
>
You May Like
Recomended from Sports Mole



ATP RankingsPoints
1Scotland flag Andy Murray7,750
2Spain Rafael Nadal7,555
3Switzerland Roger Federer7,145
4Switzerland Stanislas Wawrinka5,780
5Serbia Novak Djokovic5,325
6Croatia Marin Cilic5,155
7Alexander Zverev4,470
8Austria Dominic Thiem4,030
9Japan Kei Nishikori3,285
10Canada Milos Raonic3,230
11Bulgaria Grigor Dimitrov3,070
12France Jo-Wilfried Tsonga2,770
13Belgium David Goffin2,560
14Spain Roberto Bautista Agut2,425
15Czech Republic Tomas Berdych2,390
16United States Jack Sock2,335
17Pablo Carreno Busta2,305
18Lucas Pouille2,220
19United States John Isner2,110
20United States Sam Querrey2,060
LIVE SCORES VIDEPRINTER
expand