Commentary

Tandon's Wimbledon live blog -- Day 3

Originally Published: June 23, 2009
By Kamakshi Tandon | Special to ESPN.com

Need the inside scoop on all the latest news, results and gossip during the 2009 Wimbledon Championships? Our fearless blogger Kamakshi Tandon is on hand to fill you in on all the happenings every day from noon to 3 p.m. ET. Don't hesitate to ask your questions.

Day 1 | Day 2

3:36 p.m. ET: It was a bit of a surprise to see Sam Querrey and Marin Cilic scheduled on Centre Court today, but the two are living up to their billing. Querrey just took a fourth-set tiebreaker to send things to a fifth set. Catch the conclusion of this match if you can.

Meanwhile, Michelle Larcher de Brito is finally unleashing her shrieks on Court 12 but is down a set and a break against wily veteran Francesca Schiavone. With Sharapova already out, the grunt debate could soon be silenced.

Some great matchups are on the cards for tomorrow, including Juan Martin del Potro versus Lleyton Hewitt and Andy Murray versus Ernests Gulbis, so check back between noon and 3 p.m. ET for live updates and observations.

2:51 p.m. ET: Grass has not grown on Tommy Robredo. His expectations for this tournament? "Survive. Not win, just survive."

2:40 p.m. ET: A few scores from today:

Robin Soderling avoided what would have been a crazy upset against Spanish clay specialist Marcel Granollers. The Paris phenom won 4-7, 7-6(7), 6-4, 7-5.

Grass-loving Daniela Hantuchova beat last year's semifinalist Jie Zheng 6-3, 7-5.

Rising teen Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova is out 6-4, 7-6 (6) against Roberta Vinci.

Wondering why you haven't seen Jo-Wilfried Tsonga on the scoreboards today? His opponent, Simone Bolelli, gave him a walkover.

Leonardo Mayer defeated Oscar Hernandez and ... why do I suddenly have an inexplicable craving for a hot dog?

(That match actually took place yesterday, but I couldn't resist.)

2:25 p.m. ET: Roger Federer just charmed the socks off the British viewing public with a long interview on BBC. He is clearly in a very good mood, and not even all the attempts to find out Baby Fed's due date are making him cross.

A reporter asked him three times after his first-round match and got nowhere. Today, longtime Italian writer Ubaldo Scanagatta gave it a try in his usual inimitable style:

Scanagatta: Is it still Aug. 10, more or less, the due date?

Federer: I never said it. I don't know who told you but, you can speculate as much as you want.

Scanagatta: Mirka [Fed's wife] told me

Federer (smiling): Mirka told you? I'm sure she did ... she invited you, too, didn't she?

To curb more birth speculation, Federer also said Mirka's absence from his box today was because she was "not feeling 100 percent."

2:11 p.m. ET: Given everything said below, here's some food for thought:

Michelle Larcher de Brito complained in her last news conference that in Paris, no one paid attention the fact that she made the third round as a 16-year-old qualifier, only to her grunting.

After Monday's match, many of the stories didn't focus on the fact that her grunts were at an acceptable level, only that she wouldn't promise never to be loud again.

The poor girl can't win. Perhaps we should agree to pile on only at times when she does shriek at full throttle, huh? Sorry, Michelle -- this time it wasn't you who was making too much pointless noise.

2:03 p.m. ET: Gisela Dulko also was asked a couple of times about Maria Sharapova's grunting today, but she wouldn't bite.

There's clearly a determined campaign under way to make the grunting an issue. In other situations I'd avoid piling on, but here I really do think it's long overdue.

True, it's a bit unfair on the girls currently being targeted -- they're just the latest in a long chain of progression. First there was one, then a louder one, then an even louder one -- all the time we've been too polite to make a scene about it, and it's finally reached a level where people can't take it anymore.

It's sad that it had to come to this. The powers that be don't seem take proactive steps anymore; they just wait 'til something becomes such a public issue that it can't be avoided anymore.

The antigrunting forces may finally be gaining enough critical mass to force some kind of clampdown, so it's hard to resist giving it a nudge in the right direction.

The shrieking actually isn't that bad when watching live, but it can get intolerable on TV -- which, after all, is how most people watch tennis.

And for all the efforts to introduce on-the-court coaching and fiddling with changeovers and all the rest to please casual TV viewers, the two most effective measures, better camera angles and gagging the grunting, have gotten no attention.

1:35 p.m. ET: You might have seen British newspapers reporting unusual betting patterns in the first-round match between Jurgen Melzer and Wayne Odesnik (a lot of bets on Melzer to win in three sets).

A couple of observations:

1. Don't get excited every time bookies suspend betting on a match.

2. It's not the first time there's been speculation about an Odesnik match, though that is NOT an accusation -- on at least one occasion, he was on the winning end.

As a source told The Independent earlier, "A few of [the players being watched] aren't the ones you'd necessarily suspect while others who've had unjustified rumours trotted out about them are not of concern."

1:15 p.m. ET: Question from Yoyis about the roof:

If it rains and they close the roof, after the day's matches for Centre Court are over, will they move there some of the matches from Court One if there is still enough light?

If it's been raining and the schedule is backed up, then a Court No. 1 match could and probably would be moved to Centre Court if play on Centre finished early.

Lights have also been installed on Centre Court this year to go with the roof, so technically there's no limit to how late they can play. Some of us suspect it's only a matter of time before there's regular night play at Wimbledon.

But luckily, the only thing the roof has been used for so far is to shade the spectators from the sun.

12:49 p.m. ET: Tough loss for Taylor Dent, who went down 7-5, 7-6(6), 4-6, 6-7(3), 6-4 to Daniel Gimeno-Traver. The match had been stopped for darkness yesterday after the third set.

Still, props to Dent for qualifying and then coming from two sets down to force a fifth. The 28-year-old American is trying to return after a couple of back surgeries that by all rights should have ended his career.

Qualifying was no mean feat. Having been given a wild card, Dent found himself facing Olivier Rochus in the first round -- a matchup that really belongs in the main draw.

12:38 p.m. ET: But there's been some bad luck for Michael Llodra: Chasing down a ball, he fell near the changeover chairs and nearly squashed a ball girl in the process. As you'd expect from the tour's practical joker, he made light of it, laughing and giving the girl an apologetic hug.

It turned out to be quite serious, though. Llodra had to call for treatment on his hip soon after and retired down 4-3 against Tommy Haas on Court No. 1.

With the match cut short, Haas hit some balls against a ball girl to give the crowd a bit of entertainment.

A women's doubles match involving Laura Robson has been moved to Court No. 1.

12:31 p.m. ET: No scares for Serena Williams and Roger Federer -- both cruised through.

12:30 p.m. ET: And the tabloid editors are raising their glasses in toast.

A reporter informed Dulko that his newspaper had decided to make her the pinup girl of the tournament now that Sharapova was out. How did she feel about that?

"It's always nice. I always said, 'I'm not only a tennis player, I'm a woman.'"

Cha-ching! Check here tomorrow for a look at all the headlines that one spawned.

12:21 p.m. ET: Sharapova didn't seem to have much of an answer for why she lost this match  she started slow, her serve slowed down in the third set and she got a bit tentative during some of the rallies at the end.

She was philosophical about her situation -- still in the early stages of coming back from a shoulder injury that kept her out for nine months.

"My career is a huge part of my life, and that's what I do on a daily basis. So is it frustrating when that goes away for a while? Absolutely. But if you have a good head on your shoulders, you also know that there's a life to live."

I'd speculate whether all this gained "perspective" (a word she has used frequently today) has sapped the hunger of old, but her intensity toward the end of today's match definitely doesn't suggest that.

12:08 p.m. ET: Hi everyone ... by now you'll have heard about the first big upset of the tournament -- Gisela Dulko's taking out Maria Sharapova 6-2, 3-6, 6-4.

The third set was very entertaining, if a little patchy, and the wind was gusting quite a bit. Sharapova had all the momentum after winning seven games in a row from 3-0 down in the second set, but she couldn't quite grab her opportunities in Dulko's first couple of service games in the third. Then, serving at 3-3, Sharapova played an ugly service game (including two double faults) and went down a break herself.

It was very, very close at the end, with Sharapova battling fiercely and constantly pumping her fist, but credit Dulko for shrugging off the second set and taking the initiative on the last couple of points.

Reaction from both players coming up.

8:56 a.m. ET: Hi everyone, and welcome to what promises to be an exciting Day 3 of tennis at Wimbledon. Upsets are already in the air ... Maria Sharapova is locked in battle with Gisela Dulko on Centre Court, with Roger Federer up next and an intriguing battle between young guns Sam Querrey and Marin Cilic to follow.

Serena Williams, Novak Djokovic and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga are just some of the other names in action on this hot and sunny Wednesday -- the new Centre Court roof sure is keeping the rain away! Here are all the notable names in action, with their seeds in brackets:

Maria Sharapova (RUS) [24] vs. Gisela Dulko (ARG)
Guillermo Garcia-Lopez (ESP) vs. Roger Federer (SUI) [2]
Sam Querrey (USA) vs. Marin Cilic (CRO) [11]
Simon Greul (GER) vs. Novak Djokovic (SRB) [4]
Jarmila Groth (AUS) vs. Serena Williams (USA) [2]
Tommy Haas (GER) [24] vs. Michael Llodra (FRA)
Mardy Fish (USA) [28] vs. Janko Tipsarevic (SRB)
Victoria Azarenka (BLR) [8] vs. Ioana Raluca Olaru (ROM)
Robin Soderling (SWE) [13] vs. Marcel Granollers (ESP)
Aravane Rezai (FRA) vs. Elena Dementieva (RUS) [4]

Check back between noon and 3 ET for live updates from SW19.

Keep those e-mails (courtcoverage@rogers.com) coming, as I also will be answering your questions and comments throughout the day.