WATCH: Carla Suarez Navarro’s Mother Break Down as She Receives Standing Ovation at Wimbledon Championships 2021

Published 06/29/2021, 10:46 AM EDT
Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain – June 29, 2021 Spain’s Carla Suárez Navarro waves to spectators after losing her first round match against Australia’s Ashleigh Barty REUTERS/Peter Nicholls


Carla Suarez Navarro played her last match at Wimbledon in a valiant effort against World No.1 Ashleigh Barty. The crowd gave her a standing ovation as she left the court with her mother in tears at the 2021 edition of the Grand Slam. Her Australian opponent, Ash Barty, herself gave tribute to Suarez Navarro for her incredible journey.

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Ashleigh Barty dominates the first set

The first set started with both serving well, but Carla was looking a bit shaky on her backhand and wasn’t able to challenge Barty’s serve. Carla, at times, was strong on her forehand, but Barty was disciplined. And at 1-2 and 40-40, the match had to be temporarily interrupted because of rain. The match resumed after 16 minutes as the roof was closed and they started their warm-ups again.

Because of the rain break, Carla took her time to regroup and hence was broken by Barty. The World No.1 fired most of her shots at Carla’s backhand to bring in more mistakes. From 3-1, Barty picked up another break, as Carla wasn’t allowed to open up in the match.

Barty easily won the first set, 6-1.

Ashleigh Barty celebrates winning her first round match against Spain’s Carla Suárez Navarro REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

Carla Suarez Navarro makes a rapid comeback

The second set showed more promise from Carla. Her slices were accurate and deep; she was more active and troubled Barty early on. Leading at 2-1, Barty hit a few double faults and Carla saw a break point. The Aussie saved the break point as Carla looked elsewhere for points. Navarro was neck and neck with the World No.1 and led the second set, 3-2.

Carla Suárez Navarro in action during her first round match against Australia’s Ashleigh Barty. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls

Carla looked more comfortable than Barty, as she was returning well and coming to the net often. The Spanish player was winning short points whereas Barty was winning long and tough rallies. The latter changed her tactics to go after Carla, and ended up breaking the latter’s defense at 4-4 to earn a break point. Carla didn’t have a chance to regroup as Barty served for the match.

Ash had a shocker and failed to serve out the match. Carla took the set into a tiebreaker, where she dominated. She took a 6-1 lead and converted the first of the five-set points, 7-6(1).

Ashleigh Barty picks up the win as Carla Suarez Navarro receives an emotional send-off

After a disappointing end to the second set, Barty made a strong start to the third set. She won the first 12 points to take a 3-0 lead. Carla was tired and visibly had given her all to win that second set. However, Barty had the other gear ready, and hence, she dominated.

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It looked like Carla was getting bageled. But the Spaniard had one last push of quality to take her service game at 5-0. Ash Barty picked up the final set and won, 6-1, 6-7(1), 6-1.

Despite losing, Carla Suarez Navarro left the Center Court with a standing ovation from a teared-up crowd.

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Bhavishya Mittal

1226 articles

Bhavishya Mittal is a tennis author for EssentiallySports, who is currently pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Manipal University. A former sports editor for The Manipal Journal, Bhavishya has also worked for The New Indian Express. He has a keen eye for many sports but he is a particularly ardent follower of tennis, with a zest to create riveting articles on the ever-evolving sport.

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