Upbeat Jankovic targets spot in last 16

JELENA JANKOVIC insisted her career is “back on track” after continuing her bid to progress beyond the last 16 at Wimbledon for the first time with a fine victory over Alona Bondarenko.

The Serbian fourth seed blitzed her Ukrainian opponent 6-0 6-3 to secure a place in the fourth round, a stage she has never gone past in six previous visits to Wimbledon, despite reaching semi-finals of the other three grand slams.

Jankovic’s star has waned in the past two years, with just three tournament wins to her name since the start of the 2009 season.

The run has been a far cry from the strong title-winning form she showed in 2007 and 2008, when eight WTA crowns took her to the summit of the world rankings.

Changes to her training routine subsequently had a negative effect on her game, but since reverting to her former regime the 25-year-old feels she is rediscovering her best form.

“You’re always trying to become better as a tennis player,” said Jankovic, who will next face Vera Zvonareva of Russia after she triumphed 6-4 6-2 over Belgium’s Yanina Wickmayer.

“I think each year the game is improving, and so you have to always try to improve as well.

“If not, you’re going be left behind. But I don’t really regret anything. It’s just sometimes things work out, sometimes they don’t.

“But I’m back on track, and that’s the most important thing. I’m doing well in this moment. I’m number three in the world, which is really not bad.”

Justine Henin and Kim Clijsters, both back from retirement, each cantered to victory to set up an eye-catching all-Belgian fourth-round clash for Monday.

Eighth-seeded Clijsters fulfilled her part of the bargain by beating Maria Kirilenko 6-3 6-3, while Henin, the 17th seed, saw off Nadia Petrova 6-1 6-4 in her first appearance on Centre Court in three years.

Venus Williams was made to scrap before securing a straight-sets victory over Alisa Kleybanova.

Big-hitting Kleybanova forced the first break of the match to move into an early advantage but had no answer as second seed Williams settled into her rhythm to claim a 6-4 6-2 win and a last-16 encounter with Slovakia’s Jarmila Groth, who defeated Germany’s Angelique Kerber 6-3 7-5.

Eleventh seed Marion Bartoli of France, the runner-up in 2007, dispatched Hungarian qualifier Greta Arn 6-3 6-3 to line up a fourth-round clash with Bulgaria’s Tsvetana Pironkova, a 6-4 6-2 victor against Regina Kulikova.

More in this section

Price info

Subscribe to unlock unlimited digital access.
Cancel anytime.

Terms and conditions apply


Sat, Sept 25

Eire Og

PSFC Round 2


Sun, Sept 26

Clyda Rovers

SAFC Round 2


Puzzles logo

Puzzles hub

Visit our brain gym where you will find simple and cryptic crosswords, sudoku puzzles and much more. Updated at midnight every day. PS ... We would love to hear your feedback on the section right HERE.


Latest news from the world of sport, along with the best in opinion from our outstanding team of sports writers

Sign up