Laura Robson applied plenty of pressure but just could not force her way past a formidable Caroline Wozniacki at Devonshire Park today.
Number-five seed and former world-number-one Wozniacki was made to work hard for her second round 6-4, 6-4 victory against the British number one in perfect conditions on centre court.
Robson was the more attack-minded of the pair throughout the contest and her powerful serve and ground strokes caused her Danish opponent numerous problems.
But Wozniacki does not break easily and despite the bombardment, her defensive game remained sound as she scrambled beyond the baseline to retrieve ball after ball.
Robson’s accuracy waned and Wozniacki was quick to pounce on a poor service game with the scores locked a 4-4 to take a crucial 5-4 lead in the first set. The Dane easily served out the first set.
Robson, 19, looked flustered against her more experienced rival and her first service game of the second set was broken as her left-handed passing shots regularly flew beyond the baseline or became trapped in the net as Wozniacki continually forced her to play one shot too many.
The young Brit however remained determined and forced her own break of serve at the third attempt to give her a foothold back in the game midway through the second set.
But the world number nine, who won in Eastbourne four years ago, played the more consistent tennis and frustrated Robson by continually keeping the ball in play - so much so, the normally mild-mannered Robson dropped an ‘F bomb’ at the end of one rally that was picked up by the BBC microphones.
Wozniacki sensed the end was near. Robson’s serve was broken once more to make it 5-4. An ace from Wozniacki brought two match points and another over hit forehand from Robson ensured it was the Dane that advanced.
Robson, frustrated, departed a packed centre court swiftly, speaking later she said, “Caroline is quite a defensive player. That is how she has always played, so, if I tried to play defensive, then I probably would have lost a lot easier.
“I just thought sometimes I went for it a little too much, but against her, that’s how you have to play sometimes.”
Of her swear word caught on camera, she added, “I’ll try not to swear so loud next time. It’s just the microphones on the back of the court pick it up. I’ll try not to do it at all next time.”
A satisfied Wozniacki said, “I really had to fight out there. I really had to keep focus on my own service game. We had some tight games but it turned in my favour.”
Wozniacki will face Ekaterina Makarova of Russia in round three.