Hewitt suffers shock Wimbledon loss

By on June 26, 2013

Lleyton Hewitt

Shock loss … Lleyton Hewitt is knocked out of Wimbledon in the second round. Source: Kirsty Wigglesworth / AAP

Lleyton Hewitt’s Wimbledon campaign ended with a shock loss to flamboyant German qualifier Dustin Brown in the second round on Wednesday.

The 32-year-old Australian failed to build on his first round-upset win over 11th seed Stanislas Wawrinka, losing 6-4 6-4 6-7 (3-7) 6-2 to 189th-ranked Brown.

It was only Hewitt’s second loss in 13 matches against qualifiers at grand slam events and the defeat leaves Bernard Tomic as the only Australian left in the men’s singles draw.

Journeyman Brown, 28, produced one of the performances of his life as he reached the third round of a grand slam for the first time.

Sporting long, dreadlocked hair, the German – who changed his nationality from Jamaican in 2010 – came out swinging from the hip.

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And his high-risk approach paid off with Hewitt, the 2002 Wimbledon champion, troubled from the outset by his big serve and ferocious forehand.

Just when Hewitt looked to be grinding his opponent down, Brown broke serve at 5-4 to steal the set, celebrating wildly with his arms raised.

The Australian tried to pump himself up after breaking serve in the opening game of the second set but Brown hit back soon after and a poor service game from Hewitt allowed the qualifier to go two sets up.

Hewitt won six straight points in in the third tie-breaking, extending the match to a fourth set.

But Brown quickly wrestled the momentum back, breaking twice to race to a 4-1 lead and serve out the match in two hours and 23 minutes.

Brown, who spent four years earlier in his career travelling around Europe in a campervan to play tournaments, was in tears as he walked off the court.

“It’s going to take a while to sink in,” Brown said.

“I’m not normally a guy to cry, I don’t really know what happened.

“I’m playing Lleyton Hewitt, a guy that you’re watching when you’re growing up.

“I’ve been so often close to winning big matches but couldn’t put it together and this is the first time I just went through with it.”

After a surprise run to the Queen’s Club semi-finals and his superb first round performance, world No.70 Hewitt had been eyeing a run deep into the draw in his 15th consecutive Wimbledon campaign.

Following the shock opening-round defeat of Rafael Nadal, his section of the draw opened up further when 18th seed John Isner retired hurt with a knee injury on Wednesday, giving Frenchman Adrian Mannarino a free passage into a third-round meeting with Brown.

FOXSPORTS.com.au | Tennis

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