Elina Svitolina admits her career has hit a rocky road after becoming the highest casualty of Wimbledon so far.
The third seed was dumped out in the second round by Magda Linette, who posted a career highlight 6-3 6-4 win in little over an hour.
The Ukrainian was a semi-finalist at SW19 in 2019 and followed that up with a run to the last four in the US Open a couple of months later.
But she has fallen on hard times since the coronavirus pandemic struck, having made it past the fourth round in just one of the five grand slams played since.
“When you play a grand slam, it is all of the time a lot, different kind of pressures,” Svitolina said. “Sometimes it’s tough to handle, but it is part of the job, is the part of the grand slam.
“You have to be strong, try to be good to yourself and try to overcome the fears, the difficulties.
“Today probably I was not fresh mentally to do that. I have been on the tour for years now and been in different kind of situations. But right now I wouldn’t say it’s very smooth times in my career.
“For sure, it’s a tough time, but I have been in these situations in my career a few times. And it’s how you come back, how you bounce back from tough losses, tough times in the career.”
World number one Ashleigh Barty was happy to get through without having to play her best tennis.
Barty made it past Anna Blinkova 6-4 6-3 and said: “A few things didn’t feel quite right today. That’s half the battle in sport, is being able to find a way when it’s not feeling all that great.
“I felt like when my back was against the wall, I was able to bring the good stuff. It just wasn’t quite there all the time.
“We have another opportunity to now go out on the practice court, work on it, try to bring some good stuff in the third round.”
French Open winner Barbora Krejcikova says she has already surpassed expectations by making it through to the third round.
The Czech may have won a grand slam but she has never appeared at Wimbledon before until this year.
The grass court season was already under way when she won in Paris – in what was the first time she had ever gone past the fourth round in a slam – so she is not expecting too much, despite a 7-5 6-4 win over Andrea Petkovic.
“So far I feel extremely happy. It’s always hard to switch from clay to grass,” she said. “I had such a huge run in Paris, and then after I didn’t really have much time to actually prepare, so came here with no expectations.
“I mean, so far I’m really happy that, you know, that I’m in the third round and I’m going to play another match. It’s amazing.”
Coco Gauff enjoyed her return to Centre Court, beating Elena Vesnina 6-4 6-3.
Gauff made her name on the main show court two years ago when she got to the fourth round as a 15-year-old and took little time to get past the Russian.
Maria Sakkarri, who Krejcikova beat in the Roland Garros final, is out, though, after a 7-5 6-4 loss to Shelby Rogers.
Victoria Azarenka was in no mood to discuss her Wimbledon exit, delivering a 13-word press conference.
The 12th seed lost 7-6 (5) 3-6 6-4 to Romanian Sorana Cirstea on Court One and immediately came through to speak to the press.
However, it was clear she was only there out of necessity, offering no answers of substance to three questions.
Great Britain’s Emma Raducanu continued her fairytale debut with a sensational win over Marketa Vondrousova.
The 18-year-old was only handed a wild card into the main draw at late notice but backed up a round-one victory over Vitalia Diatchenko to claim the biggest triumph of her career on Wednesday with a 6-2 6-4 success on Court 12.
Jelena Ostapenko and Angelique Kerber both made it through epic battles.
Ostapenko, who won in Eastbourne last week, beat Daria Kasatkina 6-1 3-6 8-6, while 2017 champion Kerber got the better of Sara Sorribes Tormo 7-5 5-7 6-4 in three hours and 21 minutes.