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Air: Kai Hardwick

Two German women are in a thrilling round of 16 in the ongoing Grand Slam tournament at Wimbledon. Your daily life couldn’t be more different.

Wimbledon – London, the capital of England, is the center of the sporting world these days. The most traditional tennis tournament will be held in Wimbledon this year. A German women’s pair is still part of the Grand Slam – and has been stirring up the world’s elite in the past few days. Tatjana Maria and Jules Niemeyer play in the Round of 16 on Sunday (July 3). Both will look to continue their impressive run in the first three rounds.

Wimbledon: Tatjana Maria and Jules Niemeyer have rocked the tennis world

There were three Germans in the women’s table in the third round: Angelique Gerber and Niemeyer and Maria. Few experts believed Kerber, the 2018 Wimbledon champion. However, the multiple Grand Slam winner lost her third round match against Belgium’s Elise Mertens in two sets after a poor performance. But outsiders Niemeyer (ranked 97th in the world) and Tatjana Maria (ranked 103rd) stunned in a big way.

The sporty big chunk was destroyed by the latter on the third lap. Maria defeated world number five Maria Zachary of Greece 6-3, 7-5. The German unnerved the hold with his forehand and backhand flat slice, which was well received by grass and strong volleys from the surface. The win meant that the 34-year-old Maria reached the round of 16 for the first time in her career at a Grand Slam tournament.

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Tatjana Maria is delighted to have won the third round at Wimbledon. © Kirsty Wigglesworth/dpa

After the match, the mother of two was overjoyed: “There are no words for it, pure joy that I can enjoy this with my family,” she said – and thanked her husband Charles Edward Maria. “None of this would be possible without him. He always believes in me and supports me in everything.”

Wimbledon: Tatjana Maria reaches round of 16 as mother-of-two – ‘nothing has changed’ for daughters

Family life may be Maria’s priority and key to success. “As a mom you might feel a little different, my focus is on my kids,” said Maria after the Zakari match. “I’ll go out there later, pick up my kids from daycare and be a mom. Whether I win or lose, nothing changes for them.

Between competitions and training sessions, she and her husband take care of their two daughters. The youngest, Cecilia, was born in 2021. Her older sister Charlotte is eight now – and she’s already swinging a racquet just like her mum. Charlotte shows talent, which seems to have been instilled in her parents. Because father Charles Edward was once a tennis pro.

Tennis pro Tatjana Maria with her husband Charles Edouard and their daughters Charlotte and Cecilia with the trophy after winning the WTA Tour tournament in Bogota
Tatjana Maria won her second title on the WTA Tour in Bogotá in April 2022. She celebrated with husband Charles Edward and daughters Charlotte (2nd from left) and Cecilia. © Cristian Bayona/dpa

Wimbledon: Tatjana Maria wants daughter Charlotte to be ‘a role model’ – eight-year-old shows off her tennis skills

“I try to be a role model for her,” Mom said. And proudly prophesied: “She will be the next champion.” But first, Charlotte’s mother currently wants to reach the last eight. In the round of 16, Maria will face Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko.

Another surprise for the German grass-court specialist, who won one of her two WTA Tour tournament victories on grass in Mallorca in 2018. And if Maria wins, the German could face Jules Niemeyer in the quarter-finals.

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Wimbledon: Jules Niemeyer will face local hero Watson and the crowd in the round of 16.

The Dortmund native, who captains Maria at Bundesliga side DC Bredini, is a significantly different player than his teammate. Instead of cutting a lot, Niemeyer relies on power tennis, especially with a strong forehand and very good serve. In the second round, the 22-year-old defeated world number three Anette Kontaveit (Estonia) 6-4, 6-0. Niemeyer had to fight a little harder for her ticket to the round of 16, defeating Ukraine’s Lesia Tsurenko in three sets.

The round of 16 against Britain’s Heather Watson will now be a battle against opposition and a rabid home crowd. Spectators will be cheering loudly for their compatriot – probably at center court. “The atmosphere will be incredible,” believes Niemeyer. But she remains calm: “I’m looking forward to it.”

Tennis players Andrea Petkovic and Jules Niemeyer top five fifth during a doubles match at Wimbledon.
Andrea Petkovic (left) thinks highly of Jules Niemeyer. The two played doubles together at Wimbledon. © Frank Molter/dpa

Wimbledon: Confident Jules Niemeyer ‘can beat almost anyone’ – Petkovic praises doubles partner

The young German was not lacking in confidence. Of course, that escalated after Niemeyer struggled to qualify for the main round at Wimbledon. After their strong performance, young hope: “I can beat almost anyone.”

Andrea Petkovic sees it the same way. The long-time Fed Cup champion was Niemeyer’s doubles partner at Wimbledon and thinks highly of him. “Sports-wise, he’s an absolute top-20 player for me,” Petkovic said SZ: “She knows it, I tell her seven to eight times a day.” (kh)

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