Barton Edges Olivetti in Epic Three-Day Match at Wimbledon

by John on June 30, 2016

Matt Barton

Australian qualifier Matt Barton withstood 56 aces from big-serving Albano Olivetti to win an epic three-day first round marathon 6-7 (7), 7-6 (5), 6-3, 6-7 (5), 14-12 at Wimbledon earlier today. Barton was the last man accepted into the Roehampton qualifying tournament after several late withdrawals in the final hours prior to the cutoff time last week. The 24-year-old Aussie won three matches at Roehampton, as did fellow qualifier Olivetti, to reach his first Grand Slam main draw. Olivetti was making his third Grand Slam appearance, having qualified for the 2013 U.S. Open and the recipient of a wild card for the 2014 French Open. Both appearances resulted in first-round losses for the big Frenchman. The two began their match at SW19 on Tuesday, but rain halted proceedings at 5-5 in the second set tiebreaker, ending play for the day. Barton edged ahead two sets to one on Wednesday before rain halted play again. After a four-hour delay, Olivetti took the fourth set and both held serve through six games of the fifth before rain once again terminated action for the day. On and on they played today. With no tiebreaker in the fifth set at Wimbledon, holding serve was paramount for survival. Olivetti blinked first, double-faulting (his 17th DF of the match) at 12-13, 30-40, Barton’s fourth match point in the nerve-wracking concluding set. The contest lasted fours and two minutes over the three days. Barton fell face down on the court after Olivetti’s crucial miscue. “That was ridiculous. I can’t believe it. I’m still shocked by the win,” Barton said. “I didn’t know what to do. I had no idea. I’ve never been in a situation like that. I didn’t know what to do. I was just relieved and couldn’t believe it. It was a great feeling for me. I’m stoked. Can’t believe it.” Barton served 32 aces and won 86 percent of his first service points, while double-faulting nine times. Olivetti won 84 percent of his first serves and 60 percent of his second, and saved 11 of 13 break points. Barton saved the only break point he faced. The Australian won 217 points to 216 for Olivetti, a telling tale on the closeness of the match. “To win a five set match like this at Wimbledon, coming through qualies, my first main draw. To win is pretty exciting,” Barton said. “I’m just excited to play again.” Barton will face another big server, John Isner, in the second round.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: