Caroline Wozniacki complained about the flying insects at Wimbledon, demanding that bug spray be brought to the court.
She wondered aloud whether play should be halted because of a brief drizzle.
And the No. 2-seeded Wozniacki was not exactly gracious in defeat after staving off five match points, but not the sixth, in what became a 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 loss to 35th-ranked Ekaterina Makarova of Russia in the second round at the All England Club on Wednesday.
The reigning Australian Open champion’s latest lackluster showing at Wimbledon made her the fifth top-eight seeded woman to exit by the end of Day 3, which was prematurely ended by rain.
Wozniacki said Makarova “got a little lucky” and added, “I would be very surprised if you saw her go far.”
Asked what she thought of those remarks, Makarova laughed and replied: “Well, I don’t know what to say. Yeah, maybe I was lucky today. Good for me. Thanks, God.”
Serena Williams continued her Wimbledon return by moving into the third round with an emphatic 6-1, 6-4 victory over Viktoriya Tomova. The seven-time champion, seeded 25th this year, lost just five of 32 points on her first serve, as she took a little over an hour to triumph against her 135th-ranked opponent.
She next faces Kristina Mladenovic of France, who defeated German Tatjana Maria 6-2, 6-2.
Five-time Wimbledon champion Venus Williams once again dropped the opening set and once again dominated the rest of the way to win. The No. 9 seed, at 38 the oldest woman in the draw, came back to beat 141st-ranked qualifier Alexandra Dulgheru of Romania 4-6, 6-0, 6-1.
“I mean, it’s just about winning the match. And so, if that’s your best or not, your best doesn’t matter,” Venus said, “as long as you win.”
Karolina Pliskova advanced to the third round for the first time with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Victoria Azarenka and will next face Mihaela Buzarnescu, after she defeated wild card Katie Swan 6-0, 6-3.
American Madison Keys also advanced with a 6-4, 6-3 win over Luksika Kumkhum.
However, it was Wozniacki’s departure that counted as the closest thing to big news on Wednesday.
She is a former No. 1 who recently claimed her first Grand Slam title. She won a grass-court tuneup tournament last weekend.
Wozniacki had convinced herself this was going to be her year to shine at the All England Club, the only major where she has never been past the fourth round. In addition to her title on the hard courts in Australia, she has twice been the runner-up on that surface at the US Open, and she has been a quarterfinalist twice on the French Open’s red clay.
But a game that is principally predicated on defense can be harder to make work on the speedy grass, where Makarova produced twice as many winners Wednesday, 46-23.
“It’s frustrating,” Wozniacki said, “because I feel like I could have gone and done something really great here.”
Instead, it’s the fourth time in the past seven years that she is out in the first or second round.
She almost put together quite a comeback, though.
After trailing 5-1 in the third set, Wozniacki broke twice when Makarova served for the match. The second time, at 5-3, Makarova was within a point of victory four times, but she was unable to convert, wasting one of those opportunities with a double fault. Once Wozniacki pulled even in the last set by holding at love, Makarova gave herself a bit of a talking-to.
“At 5-all, I said to myself, ‘OK, calm down. Start over,” recounted Makarova, a former top-10 player who twice has been a major semifinalist and got to the Wimbledon quarterfinals in 2014.
From deuce in that game, Makarova picked up six of the last seven points.
Earlier in the match, Wozniacki was irritated by the bugs that also showed up last year at the tournament. She insisted that something needed to be done about them. Organizers used bug spray after Wozniacki complained to the chair umpire about them.
Makarova too called the scene “a little bit strange and different” and “a little bit uncomfortable.”
That word also described how Makarova’s left-handed game made Wozniacki feel.
“I had a chance today. I fought all I had. I’m out. That’s it,” said Wozniacki, who actually won more total points, 94-91. “It’s life sometimes. You just have to keep working and come back. And hopefully next time, luck will be on my side.”