Petra Kvitova, who once prowled the Wimbledon lawns as if she owned them, has survived a gruelling second set to reach Wimbledon’s third round.
Joining her in the last 32 is Paula Badosa, the world No.4, who avoided the cull of seeds which has already resulted in four of the women’s top 10 being knocked out.
Badosa was the first winner on Thursday, the fourth day of the championships, the Spaniard taking 72 minutes to see off Romania’s Irina Bara 6-3 6-2.
Watch the latest sport on Channel 7 or stream for free on 7plus >>
It was harder work against another Romanian for Kvitova, the only woman not called Williams to win two ladies’ titles here this century
The first set was sealed easily enough, taking less than half-an-hour, but Ana Bogdan put up sterner resistance in the second.
The 25th seeded Czech, who was champion in 2011 and 2014, soon went 5-1 up only for Bogdan to launch a remarkable fightback.
Kvitova still had a match point serving at 5-4 but was broken again, then faced two set points as the Czech served at 5-6.
The 32-year-old veteran survived before, to her visible relief, she took the 76-minute set on the tiebreak for a 6-1 7-6 (7-5) victory.
Besides Australian No.1 Alja Tomljanovic, who beat Catherine Harrison, there was also an early win for France’s Alize Cornet over another American Claire Liu.
As play got underway in London SW19 many of the spectators were still discussing Wednesday’s night’s exit of Emma Raducanu, the new darling of British tennis.
The teenager has been struggling for form and fitness since winning the US Open last September, so her 6-3 6-3 defeat to in-form, bold-hitting French world No.55 Caroline Garcia was not really a surprise.
It was, though, a huge let-down for an audience who desperately wanted to see Raducanu go deep into what is only her second Wimbledon.
Afterwards Raducanu insisted she was fit, but rusty, and happy with her progress. She was unworried by others’ expectations of her as a grand slam winner, if at times exasperated by them.
“I’ve played seven hours of tennis in a month. To even compete with these girls and win a round is a pretty good achievement,” she said.
“I didn’t really have many expectations of myself. Playing on centre court again was a really positive experience .”
“There’s no pressure. I’m still 19. It’s a joke. I’m a slam champion, so no one’s going to take that away from me. If anything, the pressure is on those who haven’t done that.”
There will be plenty more Wimbledons for Raducanu but, for now, it is back to the gym and the practice court as she builds up to her title defence in New York.
Among the other exits on day three were 2017 champion Garbine Muguruza, who lost 6-4 6-0 to Belgian Greet Minnen and No.2 seed Anett Kontaveit, hammered 6-4 6-0 by the power-hitting Wimbledon debutant Jule Niemeier.
There were no problems though for Ons Jabeur and Maria Sakkari, third and fifth seeds respectively, who cruised into the third round in straight sets.
Two former grand slam champs, Angelique Kerber, who won here in 2018, and ex-French Open winner Jelena Ostapenko, also progressed.
Lesia Tsurenko won an emotional all-Ukrainian tie defeating No.29 seed Anhelina Kalinina.