On day 4 at WTA Mutua Madrid 2021, Naomi Osaka and Karolina Pliskova left the scene. The number two of the seeding, fresh from the first victory on clay-court of the season, was unable to repeat herself against Karolina Muchova.
A decidedly more gifted player, technically and mentally, than her countrywoman from Osaka faced in the first round, Misaki Doi. After a practically perfect first set, the Czech tennis player condenses the vast majority of difficulties in the second and spreads in the third.
At the threshold of two hours of play she spreads and fixes the success at 6-4 3-6 6-1. Despite the defeat, Osaka takes defeat philosophically. Or at least with more philosophy than that of Miami with Maria Sakkari. Speaking of Maria Sakkari, the Greek tennis player overcomes the cut of the second round and reaches the third round from the WTA 1000 Madrid thanks to a very solid 6-3 6-1 against Anett Konteveit.
Victoria Azarenka, number six of the seeding, who after a first set as an extra with Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova did not even manage to appear near the tie break in the second. She actually ends up 6-0 7-5. The second weekly engagement of the two-time tournament champion Simona Halep turns out to be poor in problems.
After trimming a 6-0 to Sara Sorribes Tormo in the first round, the Romanian tennis player repeats herself against Saisai Zheng. With a rather large advantage to defend during the second, as well as a break, the number three of the group serves with rather modest results for the match at 5-3 before re-establishing the hierarchies at the foot of the finish line and dragging herself to 6-0 6 -4.
Elise Mertens and Elena Rybakina await her in the quarter-finals. Everything easy for Aryna Sabalenka against Daria Kasatkina, Jennifer Brady leaves three games on the road in the challenge with Jelena Ostapenko, in the final part of the day Viktoria Azarenka gives up and leaves the way of the round of 16 to Jessica Pegula.
WTA Madrid 2021: Barty, Swiatek and Kvitova to the 3rd round
At the 3rd round of the Mutua Madrid Open 2021, world no.1 Ashleigh Barty will challenge last edition of the Roland Garros winner Iga Swiatek. The young Polish girl also did not run into one of her best days, but unlike her next opponent, she ended her second round match in two sets against Laura Siegemund.
In the first set, both Swiatek and Siegemund hesitated to serve, but the rival broke once more. In the second set, the game that ended the match can be considered the manifesto of Swiatek's suboptimal performance. The number 17 in the world, at 5-3 in favor, in fact wasted 10 match points in a single game before taking advantage of the eleventh by taking advantage of Siegemund's bad volley.
In the 2nd round of the Spanish event, Petra Kvitova took a great win against Angelique Kerber, in two sets, with the final score of 6-4 7-5. In both sets, the German lost her service after breaking the Czech player and played the decisive points with tension.
In the first, the tape sided with Kvitova and literally handed her the set point by putting Kerber out of the game; in the second set, the two-time Wimbledon Grand Slam champion found a series of winning shots in the game that ended the set and the match at 7-5.
In the other matches, last but not least the victories of Anastasija Sevastova and Ons Jabeur, who respectively beat the number 15 seeded Johanna Konta and the American Sloane Stephens. In the third round also Iga Swiatek and Ashleigh Barty, who will clash in a super challenge in the 3rd round.
Ashleigh Barty didn't have one of her best days on a tennis court, but the fact that she managed to find a way to solve her problems and win a game that seemed to have gotten out of hand speaks volumes about her talent and achievements she got in the recent seasons.
The world number one was very foul in the first set and she had to face three heavy break points, all canceled with courage, before breaking her opponent's serve in the ninth game and closing the set with a score of 6-4.
In the second half of the game, on the other hand, Barty completely exited the match and, after winning the opening game in the service, she collected a partial of five games to zero. In the last and decisive set, the break that decided the match came in the second game, when the Slovenian sent an easy forehand to the net and allowed Barty to melt after the heavy passive.
Zidansek had the only two chances to re-enter the match in the fifth game, but did not score in response in either game and allowed the Australian to reach the third round of the WTA in Madrid.