Sharapova stunned by Wozniacki
Originally published on 01/09/14
Wozniacki downs Sharapova in fourth-round classic
Caroline Wozniacki produced one of the performances of her career to beat No.5 seed Maria Sharapova 6-4 2-6 6-2 and move on to the quarter-finals for the first time in three years.
“I'm serving well, I'm running well, I'm staying aggressive when I have to, and I make the right decisions at the right moment,” Wozniacki said of her resurgence this summer. “And I enjoy playing.”
The No.10 seed got off to the perfect start, racing out to a 3-0 lead, and while Sharapova responded in kind a loose game while serving to stay in the set handed the Dane the opener.
The former champion broke twice at the start of the second set to level up before the players left Arthur Ashe Stadium for a 10-minute heat rule break. On their return Wozniacki put her marathon training to good use when, at 1-2 0-40, she chased down four balls at full stretch before Sharapova netted an easy volley.
A second break sealed victory and a showdown with Sara Errani for a place in the semi-finals after the Italian ended Mirjana Lucic-Baroni’s run with a 6-3 2-6 6-0 win.
Federer rides out early storm to rout Granollers
Roger Federer made the worst possible start to his third-round match with Spain’s Marcel Granollers but, aided by a lengthy rain delay, the 17-time Grand Slam champion hit back after losing the first set to romp home 4-6 6-1 6-1 6-1.
The players were called off court with Granollers leading 5-2 shortly before a heavy thunderstorm struck Flushing Meadows. The Spaniard had taken the first nine points of the match, rushing Federer into mistakes from the outset.
The world No.42 claimed the first set but after holding at the start of the second, Federer went on to win 18 of the next 20 games, including an unanswered nine-game streak that left him in charge in the third.
“It's been really excellent the last three matches here at the US Open,” Federer said. “I feel very explosive, quick. The coordination is there, as well. I feel like I've gotten used to the hard courts by now.”
Federer faces Roberto Bautista Agut in the fourth round after the Spaniard downed a hot-headed Adrian Mannarino, who was handed a point penalty for accidentally hitting a ball girl with a ball hit in anger.
Win that and a potential quarter-final showdown with Grigor DImitrov awaits after the No.7 seed came through an entertaining tussle with David Goffin 0-6 6-3 6-4 6-1. The Bulgarian faces Gael Monfils, a sraight-sets winner over Richard Gasquet, in the fourth round.
Unseeded Peng and Bencic to face off in quarters
At leat one player from beyond the 32 seeds will play in the semi-finals of the US Open after Peng Shuai and Belinda Bencic continued their dream runs in New York.
Peng hit nine aces as she booked her place in the quarter-finals with a 6-3 6-4 victory over No.14 seed Lucie Safarova, ending the Czech’s fine summer season.
On Ashe, in front of mentor and former world No.1 Martina Hingis, Swiss 17-year-old Bencic battled past 2008 finalist Jelena Jankovic, 7-6(6) 6-3.
“I was so tight!” Bencic admitted after reaching her first Grand Slam quarter-final. “It was always a dream to play on this court – I dreamt of it as a kid.”
Performance of the day
Hats off to Gilles Simon, through to the fourth round in New York for just the second time in his career after leaving David Ferrer guessing all afternoon with his array of spin, pace and combinations. The Spanish No.4 seed had no answer and exited 6-3 3-6 6-1 6-3 to become the highest-ranked casualty in the men’s draw. Simon will face Marin Cilic for a place in the quarter-finals.
Quote of the day
"I feel I have more power on my serve. I volley better now. I've gotten to understand so many things over those years. But the thing back then is I was so unbelievably confident. I was coming through stretches where I wouldn't lose against top 10 players, I wouldn't lose finals. I didn't remember losing – how it happened or how it would work. I had an unbelievable winner mentality – not that I don't have it today, but I haven't won as much as I did back then."
Roger Federer reflects on the difference between the player he is now and the player that won 12 Grand Slams between 2004 and 2007, including four of his five US Open titles.
Stat of the day
6 – number of breaks Bencic claimed against Jankovic. The former world No.1 had reached the fourth round without dropping serve once.