Slow-starting Kvitova moves into second round
By Toby Davis
LONDON (Reuters) - Whether it was the swathes of empty seats to greet her arrival or her sluggish movement and frequently misdirected groundstrokes, there was little in Petra Kvitova's first round victory to suggest she was the defending Wimbledon champion.
In contrast to number one seed Maria Sharapova, who treated a packed Centre Court to a regal display on Monday, the Czech showed little superstar quality as she nervously moved into the second round with a 6-4 6-4 win over Uzbekistan's Akgul Amanmuradova.
It is 12 months since the number four seed upset Sharapova to claim the title, but she looked ill-at-ease in the role of champion as she strolled out on Tuesday to begin her title defense.
It ended happily with the Czech saluting Centre Court with a smile and a wave, but it began in a flurry of unforced errors.
"I was nervous," she said during a rather swift press conference that extended to just three questions.
"It was first time for me to be as the defending champion of the grand slam. It was huge honor to come to the Centre Court.
"Of course I would like to make everyone happy, but it's not that easy."
She looked less than happy in the opening games as she was broken early by the world number 96 and was twice just one point away from falling a double break behind. Continued...