Defending champion Kerber in shock early exit to lucky loser
Angelique Kerber’s title defence ended at the second hurdle at Wimbledon after she capitulated against lucky loser Lauren Davis.
The German fifth seed rolled through the opening set, but could only win three of the next 15 games as she fell 2-6 6-2 6-1.
Kerber, a three-time Grand Slam champion, raced through the first set before the match turned wildly on its head and Davis, who needed a lucky-loser spot to play in the tournament, lost only three more games.
After taking the second set, the 25-year-old Davis turned the screw on Court Two and wrapped up victory in an hour and 55 minutes when fifth seed Kerber netted.
The American had previously been a top-30 player but had fallen to 252 in the world by the end of 2018, before beginning a rapid rise back up the rankings.
Davis was the more aggressive, outhitting Kerber with 45 winners to 13, and broke the German's serve eight times in the match to set up a third-round meeting with number 30 seed Carla Suarez Navarro.
Angélique KerberGetty Images
The contest had started well for Kerber as she broke for a 4-2 lead in the first set and then again to love in the eighth game to clinch the opener.
Yet after a visit from the trainer, Davis turned the encounter on its head.
After the second set began with three breaks of serve, Davis held to get her nose ahead 3-1 and broke again for a 4-1 lead.
After failing to convert her first two matchpoints at 5-1, Davis made no mistake with the third when a strong return forced Kerber to net.