Ostapenko powers past Wozniacki



Originally published on 06/06/17 00:00

In a rain-interrupted contest, the attack-minded teenager cracked 38 winners to defeat the Dane for a fourth time in succession and set up a meeting with Timea Bacsinszky on Thursday.

The strong winds in the opening set made conditions tricky for both players, but it was Wozniacki who adapted better. The Dane is famed for her consistency and while she played intelligently in the early stages, her opponent was careless and made numerous unforced-errors.

The inexperienced Latvian lost the first five games, but she slowly found her rhythm and range. Her backhand down the line began to change the dynamic of the rallies and she grew in confidence as a result, however it was too late to rescue the first set.

Ostapenko remained on the front foot in the second set and she was the aggressor in the baseline exchanges. The teenager’s power-hitting had the Dane scrambling, and the scoreboard was soon level.

The Latvian had momentum on her side but play was halted in the early stages of the decider due to rain. On the resumption, Ostapenko, calm and composed, continued to crunch winners with unerring ease and Wozniacki was left helpless.

The overjoyed 19-year-old said: "I’m really happy, I still can’t believe it. I’m really happy to play here. It was tough because we had to go away twice from the court.

“Caroline is a tough opponent. She was playing great, I had to stay aggressive. I was missing sometimes but in the end it worked out. It will be really great to play here [Thursday] when it will be my birthday. I hope I can enjoy it."

Bacsinszky will be Ostapenko’s semi-final opponent. The 27-year-old Swiss is into the last four for a second time in three years after a 6-4 6-4 victory over home favourite, Kristina Mladenovic.

The match was also played in trying conditions, but Bacsinszky coped admirably with the wind and the numerous stoppages. It was the world class backhand of the Swiss that did most of the damage.


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