Tennis players are tennis fans, too.
On a rainy Friday at Melbourne Park, the third round encounter between Maria Sharapova and Lauren Davis went the distance after the American underdog grabbed the second set in a tiebreak. Behind the scenes, Roger Federer and Grigor Dimitrov — slated to play afterwards on Rod Laver Arena — were watching the match, and particularly the Swiss was following the action…dramatically.
No one expected Davis to take a set off of the Russian No. 5 seed, maybe not even Davis herself — but certainly not Dimitrov and Federer.
Davis was in the lead for much of the jeu decisif but it appeared as though Sharapova might be able to turn things around after the American ended up netting a volley at the end of a wild 27-stroke rally where she was in firm command — which drew the following reactions from Federer.
As Davis approached the net:
When she netted the volley:
Naturally, the cameras caught Davis after she netted said put-away volley…
….while Federer did not hesitate to re-enact the American’s reaction:
But on the ensuing point, Sharapova’s ball toss went errant on a subsequent first serve:
And the No. 5 seed put a forecourt ball wide on her own serve, eventually giving Davis a set point:
Which she duly converted to take the second set, 7-6(5). The realization kicked in that both guys would have to wait a little longer:
It wasn’t that long of a wait, as the Russian managed to regroup after her struggle in the second set and handed Davis a bagel to move on to the second week, 6-1, 6-7(5), 6-0.