Marina Erakovic admitted she choked after tumbling out of Wimbledon yesterday.
The New Zealand No 1 served for the match at 6-1 5-4 in her third round encounter with Briton Laura Robson but succumbed to the pressure of a partisan crowd in London and lost the next seven games in succession to eventually fall 6-1 5-7 3-6 in 115 minutes.
She lost again later in the day in the second round of the doubles with Zimbabwe's Cara Black, going down 7-6 7-6 to Canadian Eugenie Bouchard and Petra Maric, of Croatia.
"Laura knew for me it was a big moment but at the end of the day it's up to me and it's up to my game," Erakovic said.
"But obviously I'd like to say it was terrible and I screwed up but it happens. I got tight but that's just one game in the whole match. But you can't just do that - you play on. It got to me a little bit.
"I definitely had a big chance there. It's normal you get nervous in these situations and I wasn't able to take it all the way. I tried in the third a bit but obviously Laura was playing pretty well.
"Definitely, it was a real tough one to take but hey, what can you do now? What's done is done."
Robson said the crowd helped her "massively" and she believed she got inside Erakovic's head to cause the two double faults that led to her losing the key service game at 5-4 in the second set.
Erakovic said she got into a "shock phase" after throwing away her chance to win the match and thought "there's my chance gone, which is not the way to think but that's how my body reacted".
Next up for the New Zealander is her grand slam mixed doubles debut, with Croatian Ivan Dodig, of which she said she had "no expectations".
After that there's a trip home to Auckland and then the US Open.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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