Quarterfinal action Wednesday at the French Open saw the eliminations of American teenager Coco Gauff and defending champion Iga Swiatek.
Unseeded Barbora Krejcikova of the Czech Republic defeated No. 24 Gauff 7-6 (6), 6-3 to reach her first Grand Slam singles semifinal. Krejcikova, a doubles champion at Roland Garros in 2018, took advantage of 41 unforced errors by the 17-year-old Gauff.
Krejcikova, 25, fought off five set points in the opening set. She led 5-0 in the second set before needing six match points to finally put away Gauff.
“I’m obviously disappointed that I wasn’t able to close out the first set,” Gauff said afterward. “To be honest, it’s in the past, it already happened. After the match, my hitting partner told me this match will probably make me a champion in the future. I really do believe that.”
It was the 10th consecutive match win for Krejcikova, who captured her maiden WTA Tour title last month at Strasbourg.
She credited her breakthrough success in singles play this season to a change in perspective during the COVID-19 shutdown.
“Seeing that there are also other things in the world that actually are happening,” Krejcikova said. “(That) are tougher and more difficult than just me playing tennis and losing.
“It just got to my mind. I’m like, well, I go and I play tennis and I lose, but there are actually people that are losing their lives. I just felt more like, well, just relax because you are healthy. Just appreciate this and just enjoy the game. You can do something what maybe other people would like to do as well but they cannot.”
Krejcikova’s semifinal opponent will be No. 17 seed Maria Sakkari of Greece, a 6-4, 6-4 winner against reigning Roland Garros champ Swiatek of Poland. The eighth-seeded Swiatek had won 11 consecutive matches in Paris, all in straight sets.
Sakkari, who is 0-2 against Krejcikova, is also a first time Grand Slam semifinalist. Against Swiatek, she struck eight aces and won 83 percent of the points on her first serve (29 of 35) during the 91-minute match.
Sakkari saved five of six break points and finished with more winners than Swiatek, 26 to 17, and fewer unforced errors, 24 to 25.
Viking Open Nottingham
American Caty McNally cruised to a 6-0, 6-3 upset of 12th-seeded Nao Hibino of Japan in the second round of play on the grass courts in Nottingham, England.
Britain’s Katie Boulter eliminated No. 6 seed Marie Bouzkova 6-4, 6-3.
No. 4 seed Shuai Zhang was a 6-4, 6-3 winner against Australia’s Arina Rodionova. No. 7 Kristina Mladenovic of France outlasted Japan’s Kurumi Nara 6-2, 5-7, 6-2. No. 8 Alison Van Uytvanck of Belgium ousted Russia’s Marina Melnikova 6-1, 6-1 in 62 minutes.
–Field Level Media
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