Wimbledon 2016: Kuznetsova battles back against Stephens to advance through to the last 16

The 13th seed battled back from losing the first set to win the match 8-6 in the deciding set.

Wimbledon 2016: Kuznetsova battles back against Stephens to advance through to the last 16
Kuznetsova came out in top in an epic battle with Stephens (Picture source: Getty Images)

Svetlana Kuznetsova battled back from losing the first set against Sloane Stephens to advance through to the last 16 at Wimbledon.

Stephens took the first set on a tiebreak but the experienced Russian came back and won the match in an epic battle on Peoples' Sunday.

Kuznetsova won the match 6-7, 6-2, 8-6 and will play number one seed Serena Williams in the last 16.

Kuznetsova celebrates her impressive win against Stephens on court one | Photo: Getty
Kuznetsova celebrates her impressive win against Stephens on court one | Photo: Getty

Stephens comes out on top in a one-sided tiebreak

The first set began with both players holding their first service games very easily as they looked to get off to a fast start.

The pattern was the same for the next few service games as well as both players held serve well, until the eighth game when Kuznetsova got the first break of the match, on her first break point, to go 5-3 in front with a chance to serve for the set.

Stephens though wasn't going away that easily and broke back straight away to get herself back into the set at 5-4 down.

Stephens then serving to stay in the set did it successfully as she levelled the first set at 5-5. Both players then held their serve in their next games to take the first set to a tiebreak.

It was a very one-sided tiebreak as Stephens raced into a 4-0 lead with some fantastic forehand winners. Kuznetsova did get one point but Stephens was too strong for her winning the tiebreak 7-1 and the first set 7-6.

Kuznetsova responds emphatically to level the match

Kuznetsova knew she had to respond and she got off to the perfect start, breaking Stephens serve in the very first game of the second set.

Kuznetsova held serve in the next game before breaking Stephens serve for the second time to race into a 3-0 lead.

Stephens though wasn't going to go away easily and broke Kuznetsova's to get one of the breaks back.

Stephens then held serve for the first time in the set to back up the break that she got the game before.

Kuznetsova then held her serve before breaking Stephens serve yet again to go 5-2 up in the set and with a chance to serve for the second set.

The experienced Russian didn't need a second chance as she held her serve comfortably to take the second set 6-2 and level the match at one set all.

Kuznetsova's experience shows in an epic final set

Kuznetsova continued on from where she left off in the second set by breaking Stephens serve in the first game of the third set.

Kuznetsova though was unable to consolidate the break as Stephens broke back in the very next game.

Stephens then held her own serve in the next game before Kuznetsova followed suit by doing the same in her next service game.

The next three games in the set all went with serve as both players were battling hard for an advantage.

The sixth game in the set though was different as Stephens broke Kuznetsova's serve to go 4-2 ahead. 

Stephens then held her serve in the next game and it meant that Kuznetsova would be serving to stay in the match.

The Russian did this successfully before breaking Stephens, who was serving for the match, in the next game to bring the set back on serve at 5-4.

Kuznetsova then held her serve to level up the third and final set at 5-5.

Both players then held their next service games before a crucial break in the 13th game of the set saw Kuznetsova got 7-6 up and with a chance to serve for the match.

Kuznetzova used all of her experience to serve out the set to win it 8-6 and the match by two sets to one.