Connect to share and comment

Tennis: Berdych painkillers just the tonic vs Tomic


Tomas Berdych played through the pain to down Bernard Tomic in a gruelling encounter on Wednesday for a place in the third round at Wimbledon.

The Czech sixth seed, struggling with a wrist injury, needed a dose of painkillers to get through the second round match on Court 1, beating the Australian 4-6, 7-6 (7/5), 7-6 (7/3), 6-1 in two and a half hours.

Berdych, the beaten finalist four years ago at the All England Club, faces Croatian 26th seed Marin Cilic in the round of 32.

Berdych and Tomic's only prior clash came in the fourth round at Wimbledon last year, when the Czech also triumphed in four sets.

Right-hander Berdych said that despite his painful left wrist -- affecting his two-handed backhand shots -- his primary battle was against Tomic.

"That was the first and the biggest challenge that I was facing today and he was very good, especially in the first three sets where he was pushing me really hard and giving me a really hard time," he said.

The Czech seemed mystified by the wrist injury, sustained in his first-round win over Victor Hanescu.

"It's something which is bothering me and if you have something like this, it's not the best feeling and the best help going into the match, even if it's not super painful. It's something just giving you the sense that you cannot hit the backhand how you are used to," he said.

"It's a strange injury because it happened in the first match when I slipped and fell down and I touched my hand on the floor and I finished that game, I didn't feel nothing. I just woke up in the morning and I couldn't really move my wrist.

"I got some pills but it's an experience and I'm glad to make it and be the one who's the winner."

Berdych had strapping put on his wrist in the first set, taken by Tomic, a quarter-finalist at Wimbledon in 2011.

At a changeover in the third, Berdych was given some painkillers and an anti-inflammatory. The 28-year-old was told told they would take 20 minutes to kick in.

However, the pills seemed to work even quicker than that as when Tomic had two set points, Berdych fought back to force another tie-break and then won the set decider.

He then raced through the fourth set to seal the match.