Swiatek beats Pera, Pegula holds off Bouzkova on busy day at Madrid Open

On a warm, breezy afternoon in Madrid, the third round of the women’s singles wrapped up with most of the big names advancing unscathed.

The day opened with Martina Trevisan, the No. 18 seed, advancing to the round of 16 after defeating American Alycia Parks 7-6(3) 6-1. Trevisan also beat Canadian qualifier Eugenie Bouchard before this win and will face No. 3 seed Jessica Pegula in her next match.

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Pegula swept into the next round with a hard-fought 6-4 7-6(2) win over Marie Bouzkova in two hours and 17 minutes.

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Bouzkova was dogged, never more so than in the opening game of the match which saw Pegula hold serve but only after playing a whopping 25 points.

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The American needed six set points to close out the opening frame. The decisive second set was even more tightly contested. Bouzkova fought off two match points to force a tie-break, and only there did Pegula really manage to get on top. The American raced into a 5-0 lead, and the writing was belatedly on the wall.

Top seed Iga Swiatek swept into the fourth round, beating No. 28 seed Bernarda Pera 6-3 6-2.

The world No. 1 improved her career record on clay to an all-time leading 88.2%, ahead of the iconic Serena Williams’ career average of 88%.

Swiatek defended her Porsche Tennis Grand Prix title in Stuttgart last weekend, beating world No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka in straight sets, and is in a serious vein of form as Roland-Garros approaches.

She will face the winner of Qinwen Zheng v Ekaterina Alexandrova.

No. 8 seed Daria Kasatkina beat Lesia Tsurenko 6-4 6-2 to move to the round of 16. Kasatkina will face Veronika Kudermetova in her next match. Previously, the Russian won against Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the tournament.

The most intriguing moment came in the aftermath of Kasatkina’s victory, when the Russian’s offer of a handshake was declined by the Ukrainian Tsurenko. Kasatkina gave a wave instead when Tsurenko walked past.

No. 12 seed Kudermetova earned her meeting with Kasatkina after battling past Anastasia Potapova 7-6(7-3) 5-7 6-3 to advance to the second round.

It was a three-hour battle between the two Russians, but the world No. 13 pulled out a crucial break in the eighth game of the third set to put herself in an excellent position.

She served out the match without dropping a point.

Kudermetova also won against Nuria Parrizas Diaz before today’s victory, while Potapova defeated Jaqueline Cristian in the previous round.

World No. 12 Barbora Krejcikova handled Chinese 22-year-old Xiyu Wang in 88 minutes, 6-4 6-1, to book a fourth round meeting with Croatian Petra Martic.

Krejcikova feasted on Wang’s second serves, winning 80% while the No. 65 also struggled with five double faults.

Martic beat Russian Anna Kalinskaya in three sets, blitzing through the first in just 30 minutes. Kalinskaya hit back in the second, but gave up a key break early in the third. The match hinged on the penultimate game when, down 5-3, Kalinskaya had four break points but failed to convert as Martic held before serving out the match.

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28/04/2023 AT 20:08


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