Madison Keys cries on court as injury derails Wimbledon win over Jasmine Paolini


American Madison Keys wept on Court One at Wimbledon as a horrifically timed injury forced her to retire against Jasmine Paolini of Italy.

In a hugely entertaining round-of-16 clash, No 12 seed Keys had overturned a 3-6 loss of the first set to win the second 7-6, before taking a decisive 5-2 lead in the third over Paolini, a French Open finalist last month and the No 7 seed here at Wimbledon.

Then, at 15-15, Paolini hit a backhand groundstroke deep towards the baseline, which Keys put her hand up to challenge before the line umpire belatedly called the ball out. The challenge stood, and the ball had clipped the line by about 4mm, putting Keys down 15-30. Had there been no challenge from Keys, Paolini would likely have challenged herself, but Keys played the ball back into the court, so the point would have been replayed instead of the American losing it.

From 15-30, Paolini brought up a break point, and Keys missed a forehand wide while pivoting through the shot onto her left leg, which gave way. She continued until the changeover at 5-4, when she took a medical timeout before serving for the match again.

With heavy strapping on her upper thigh, it was clear that she could not move, nor fully extend on serve, and that was when the tears began. She won some points, as Paolini went through the archetypal tennis struggle of staying in cross-court patterns against a player so injured that redirecting the ball is the route to victory, but at 5-5 was forced to quit the match.

Paolini will play another American, either No 2 seed Coco Gauff or No 19 seed Emma Navarro, in the quarter-final stage.

(Andrej Isakovic / AFP via Getty Images)



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