Tennis-Beauty sleep is antidote to rain for big-serving Raonic

June 28, 2014

By Tom Hayward

LONDON, June 28 (Reuters) - Eighth seed Milos Raonic woke from a nap to bludgeon his way into the last 16 at Wimbledon, losing just nine points on serve in a 7-6 (2) 7-6 (4) 6-2 victory over unseeded Pole Lukasz Kubot on Saturday.

The heavy-hitting Canadian thundered down 30 aces and has yet to be broken in his three matches, joining title holder Andy Murray and seven-times champion Roger Federer as the only seeded players still to drop a set.

"I don't think there is really a match that I would say, especially in a grand slam, that I was able to be as dominant as I was on my serve today," the 23-year-old Raonic told reporters.

"I only lost nine points on my serve, I think. That definitely makes my life a lot easier and puts pressure on him."

Heavy rain forced a lengthy delay and while many players waited nervously in the locker room, Raonic made good use of the spare time.

"There was one point where I sort of said, 'I don't think there is going to be any play today', and I was able to take a nap in the massage room and just stay calm and wait it out," he added.

Raonic, the second Canadian male after Daniel Nestor to ever reach the fourth round, is threatening to establish himself as the next big force in the game but says he still has some way to go to challenge in the third grand slam of the year.

"The tournament doesn't really start until Monday," he explained. "There is a lot of good tennis that's been played but now you've got to step up your level.

"It's not about just getting through. At this point in the tournament you have to be playing good tennis and you've got to compete like crazy."

Raonic will play Japan's Kei Nishikori or Italian Simone Bolelli in the last 16. (Editing by Tony Jimenez)