Sunday, 9 April 2017

Ostapenko shocks Wozniacki

Contrasting quarter final results in WTA events in Monterrey and Charleston.
Caroline Wozniacki, fully expected to romp into the semi finals in Charleston with a win over Jelena Ostapenko, was dumped unceremoniously in straight sets by the 19 year old Latvian.

In the current climate the win was a surprise for Ostapenko, given Wozniacki had made at least the quarters in 11 of her last 14 events.  However, the only time the two had played previously was in New Haven last year, and the outcome was the same.

The opening set saw Jelena have trouble hitting the mark with her first serve, but beyond that everything worked to her advantage, shots seeming to hit the line most times where there was a margin of error, whereas Caroline was unable to produce her best.  Broken twice and losing 2-6, the momentum shift just didn't arrive and set two was a struggle for the Danish star.

Wozniacki was broken for the third successive time in the first game of the second set but bounced back with some of the best returning of the match to tie it at 1-1.  However, Ostapenko continued her aggressive approach and it paid dividends in the fifth game where the Danish serve was again demolished.

Serving for the match at 5-4, Ostapenko wobbled as Wozniacki saved three match points.  Maintaining her composure, the 66th ranked player converted on the next chance and reached only the second second semi final of a Premier level tournament in her short career.

Unseeded players in two other quarter finals also won the day.  Daria Kasatkina ended the tournament for 10th seed Irina-Camellia Begu and Laura Siegemund was too accomplished for 8th seed Anastasija Sevastova.

The only seed left in the final four is the oldest player in the event, 35 year old 11th seed Mirjana Lucic-Baroni, whose quarter final victim was the last American standing, Shelby Rogers.  The oldest will meet the youngest, Ostapenko, in one semi final, while the unseeded semi will be Sevastova v Kasatkina. 

It could be an all Latvian final should Sevastova and Ostapenko win their semis.

Monterrey has gone to script for organisers, with the top four seeds comprising the semi final final berths.

Top seed Angie Kerber won two tight sets against Heather Watson and now faces fourth seed Carla Suarez Navarro in a semi.  The Spanish player dominated French seventh seed Alize Cornet at a cost of just two games.

The other semi final will please French fans disappointed at the Cornet defeat, as it includes third seed Caroline Garcia.  Garcia took just a minute over the hour to defeat American Julia Boserup and set up a clash with Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.

The second seeded Russian had some work to do in finding a way past fifth seed Hungarian Timea Babos.
After winning the opener 6-2,  Pavlyuchenkova lost direction and the second set 3-6.
The decider was fairly close but the Russian won some key points, including squeezing out a second break of the Babos serve, finally prevailing 6-2 3-6 7-5.

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