Britain's Laura Robson reaches Wimbledon fourth round after fightback

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 30 June, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 30 June, 2013, 4:04am

Laura Robson became the first British woman in 15 years to reach the Wimbledon fourth round yesterday as journeymen Lukasz Kubot and Kenny De Schepper capitalised on the culling of All England Club seeds.

Robson came from a set and 3-5 down to defeat New Zealand's Marina Erakovic, 1-6, 7-5, 6-3 and goes on to face either Alison Riske of the United States or Kaia Kanepi of Estonia, a former quarter-finalist.

Sam Smith, in 1998, was the last British woman to make the last 16. Robson, currently ranked 38 in the world, will also move into the top 30 after the tournament, the first British woman to do so since Jo Durie in 1987.

"I was getting my butt kicked in the first set," said Robson. "I was struggling to return her serve in the first set and Marina was playing really well. But I told myself just to keep working hard, she will get nervous and that's what happened."

Kubot, the 31-year-old world number 130, defeated French 25th seed Benoit Paire 6-1, 6-3, 6-4 to reach the last-16 for the second time and celebrated with an impromptu can-can on Court 18.

De Schepper, the 26-year-old world number 80, beat Argentine 22nd seed Juan Monaco, 6-4, 7-6 (10/8), 6-4 to book a last-16 spot at a major for the first time.

Russian 20th seed Mikhail Youzhny defeated Serbia's Viktor Troicki 6-3, 6-4, 7-5 and faces British second seed Andy Murray. The lopsided bottom half of the draw has been caused by the shock early exits of defending champion Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, sixth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Marin Cilic, the 10th seed.

Women's 2011 champion Petra Kvitova, the eighth seed and highest ranked player in her half after the exits of Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka, reached the fourth round with a 6-3, 2-6, 6-3 defeat of Russian 25th seed Ekaterina Makarova.