Djokovic, Sharapova enter last-16 at Wimbledon

Updated: Jun 29, 2012, 21:41 PM IST

Wimbledon: Top-seeded Novak Djokovic dropped a set against No. 28 Radek Stepanek before coming back to win 4-6, 6-2, 6-2, 6-2 to reach round four on a windy Friday, when women's No. 1 Maria Sharapova also booked a place in the last 16 by beating Hsieh Su-wie at the Wimbledon.

Djokovic is trying to become the first man since Roger Federer in 2007 to win consecutive titles at the All England Club. A day after the two-time Wimbledon champion Rafael Nadal stunningly lost to 100th-ranked Lukas Rosol in the second round under the roof at Centre Court, Djokovic fell behind against another Czech player with the stadium covered.

But after getting broken at love to end the first set, Djokovic recovered quickly. He broke Stepanek in the first game of each of the last three sets. Djokovic now faces 34th-ranked Viktor Troicki in an all-Serbian match. Troicki beat No. 15 Juan Monaco 7-5, 7-5, 6-3.

In the women's draw, Sharapova struggled with her serve again in windy conditions and rallied from a break down in the second set to beat Su-wei of Taiwan 6-1, 6-4.

The top-ranked Russian dominated the first set, breaking Hsieh three times and looked headed for an easy victory. But as the wind picked up in the second set, Sharapova's serving problems surfaced again. She double-faulted five times in the second, including one serve that bounced on her own side of the net, and trailed 4-2 before taking the last four games.

Sharapova is looking for her second Wimbledon title after losing last year's final to Petra Kvitova. She is coming off her first French Open title, which completed a career Grand Slam.

In another women's match, American teenager Sloane Stephens failed in her bid to reach the fourth round at a second straight Grand Slam tournament, losing in three sets to Sabine Lisicki of Germany. The 15th-seeded Lisicki, a semi-finalist here last year, found some consistency on her groundstrokes in the final set to complete a 7-6 (5), 1-6, 6-2 victory.

The 19-year-old Stephens was playing in her first Wimbledon and looking to reproduce her exploits from the French Open, where she reached the fourth round in her best run at a major. However, she lost five straight points after leading 5-2 in the first-set tiebreaker before recovering to win five consecutive games in a dominant second set.

American Sam Querrey hit 21 aces and edged No. 21-seeded Milos Raonic in the second round 6-7 (3), 7-6 (7), 7-6 (8), 6-4.

The match was suspended in the third set on Thursday because of darkness.

Querrey served up to 136 mph and was broken only once. A former top-20 player, he's ranked 64th and mounting a comeback after undergoing right elbow surgery a year ago. Querrey's into the third round at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time since the 2010 US Open.

Agencies