As a working mum it is little wonder Kim Clijsters’ mind will wander from the job at hand occasionally, even if it is before the watchful eyes of an Olympic crowd.
Having secured the first set on her way to a relatively comfortable 6-3, 6-3 second-round victory over Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro on Monday, the Belgian strolled to the wrong end of the court ready to begin play again.
Realising her blunder, she quickly jogged to the opposite end, laughing off the matter and apologising to a crowd that cheered with approval once she had cottoned on.
It was one of few lapses for Clijsters during her one-hour 10-minute match on No.1 Court. She got her mind quickly back on the job to break Suarez Navarro in the opening game of the second set and fought back from 0-40 to consolidate the break for 2-0.
Consecutive double faults from the Spaniard’s racket handed Clijsters a buffer of a double break and just as well. After the Belgian held points for 5-0, Suarez Navarro lifted and Clijsters’ mind again wandered momentarily from the job.
She dropped serve after making a mess of a simple forehand volley put-away, allowing Suarez Navarro to take three games on the trot.
The revival was short-lived. Clijsters took the next two games to set up a third-round meeting with 11th seeded Serbian Ana Ivanovic, a player she has never lost against.