Wednesday, 11 January 2017

Strycova battles Wozniacki + Heat

Caroline Wozniacki fought for 200 minutes in sweltering Sydney heat against Barbora  Strycova in an effort to reach the semi finals of the Apia International today.  It was the Czech player who gained the initial advantage however with the ability to exploit the Wozniacki second serve, and a 100% conversion of break points.  Average execution of shots at the net didn't help Caroline in an otherwise tight first set, eventually won 7-5 by Barbora.

The second set was longer as the temperature impacted greater, and Wozniacki required medical assistance for foot blisters.  A straight sets win appeared likely, but somehow Strycova lost the tiebreaker after leading 5 points to zip.  One set all.

Wozniacki rode the momentum, even after the excessive heat required the two take a ten minute break before beginning the deciding third set. An immediate break of serve carried through to a 3-1 lead and Strycova was visibly displeased at how things were proceeding.

A comeback to 3-3 was thwarted with another break of serve from Wozniacki but it was the last shot she fired for the afternoon.  Strycova strung together three quality games, pressuring the former world number one into a succession of errors, while finding the range with which she had managed so often in the first set.
Strycova into the semis 7-5 6-7 6-4, where she will meet second seed Aga Radwanska, who had a far easier task, toppling Chinese qualifier Ying-Ying Duan in straight sets.
Aga should have the fresher legs and take one of the two final spots.

Genie Bouchard is improving match by match, and promises to be one of the most dangerous unseeded players in next week's Aus Open draw.  The 2014 Wimbledon runner-up brushed aside Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova for the loss of just five games, booking a semi final berth against sixth seed Johanna Konta.  The Brit found it a little tougher in her quarter final struggle with Daria Kasatkina, but was still victorious in just the two sets.
Johanna is my tip to tip out Genie in three.

No comments:

Post a Comment