Wimbledon 2024: Novak Djokovic survives spirited challenge from British wildcard Jacob Fearnley

Even though Novak Djokovic was nursing a dodgy right knee, toppling him at Wimbledon was never going to be easy for a Briton ranked 277th and so it proved as the Serb huffed and puffed into the third round with a 6-3 6-4 5-7 7-5 win over Jacob Fearnley.

The wildcard, who was ranked outside the world’s top 500 just a month ago before shooting up almost 250 spots after winning a second tier Challenger event in Nottingham, will take away many memorable moments from his Centre Court debut.

He is unlikely to forget the high-risk, high-reward strategy he employed in the final game of the third set, which ended with Djokovic hacking a forehand wide to surrender his serve and the set – to the delight of the hollering crowd.

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But all the heroics from a journeyman Scot, who until this week had never won a main tour match or even competed at a Grand Slam, were simply not enough to tame a player chasing a record-extending 372nd Grand Slam match win.

A forehand winner sealed Djokovic his passage into round three and kept him on course to win a record 25th Grand Slam title.

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