Tag: Simona Halep

Tennis: Caroline Wozniacki & Simona Halep to meet in Stuttgart semis

Caroline Wozniacki will face Romanian world number three Simona Halep in the semi-finals of the Tennis Grand Prix in Stuttgart after beating in-form Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro 6-0 6-3.

Dane Wozniacki, 24, took just one hour and six minutes to secure victory.

Halep, 23, overcame Italy’s Sara Errani 6-4 6-4 to make the last four.

Germany’s Angelique Kerber saw off sixth seed Ekaterina Makarova 6-3 6-2 and will face American Madison Brengle in the other semi-final.

Kerber had already beaten defending champion Maria Sharapova on Tuesday,

World number 43 Brengle, who previously beat reigning Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova in the second round, saw off France’s Caroline Garcia 3-6 6-3 6-3 in the day’s final quarter-final.

Read more at BBC Sport

Australian Open: Bouchard set for Sharapova showdown

Perfectionist Eugenie Bouchard revealed she had given herself a stern talking to after surviving a second-set collapse to book her place in the quarter-finals of the Australian Open for the second year running.

Bouchard, who went on to reach the last four in Melbourne on her championship debut 12 months ago, won the first set against Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu 6-1 on Rod Laver Arena and was 3-0 up in the second with two breaks of serve.

However, the 20-year-old then lost the next five games in a row and eventually the set 7-5, before some harsh words during a toilet break inspired the Canadian to take the decider 6-2 and set up a last-eight clash with second seed Maria Sharapova.

“I feel like I started really well so I wanted to keep that going but she came up with a couple of shots and my level totally dropped, which was not good,” Bouchard said.

As well as reaching the semi-finals in Melbourne, Bouchard’s breakout year saw her reach the same stage in the French Open – where she lost to Sharapova – and a first grand slam final at Wimbledon, where she was beaten by Petra Kvitova.

Asked what had changed between last season and this, Bouchard added: “I think I just have that inner belief. I really have that confidence even if it’s not going well, just like in my previous round. I was able to stay calm and I know I have another gear to go to and I still have a good chance if I just keep fighting and keep trying.”

Sharapova followed Bouchard on to Rod Laver Arena and defeated China’s Shuai Peng 6-3 6-0 to continue making the most of saving two match points in the second round against Alexandra Panova.

sharapova-beats-peng

“I feel like someone or something gave me another chance and when you are close to losing a match you have to try a few different things. I thought I did that well in the rounds after that match,” Sharapova said.

The other quarter-final in the bottom half of the draw was also decided on Sunday evening, with 10th seed Ekaterina Makarova defeating Julia Goerges 6-3 6-2 to reach the last eight for the third time in four years.

Makarova will face third-seed Simona Halep, who made light work of Yanina Wickmayer, 6-4 6-2.

Read more at ESPN

Australian Open: Sharapova survives two match points to progress

Second seed Maria Sharapova saved match point twice before defeating Alexandra Panova – ranked No.150 in the world – to progress to the third round of the Australian Open.

Trailing 5-4 in the decisive third set, Sharapova hit two forehand winners as Panova served for the match, before running out a 6-1 4-6 7-5 winner.

“I was not playing my best tennis today,” admitted Sharapova, who hit 51 unforced errors in the match which lasted two hours and 32 minutes.

“I think she [Panova] played a pretty inspired match. She came out here with not much to lose and swinging freely and going for her shots.”

Sharapova, who won the Australian Open in 2008 and has five Grand Slam titles to her name, is the only surviving major winner in her half of the draw. She admitted that she knew “not too much, actually” going into the match about her opponent, who had won her first ever Grand Slam match in five attempts to reach the second round in Melbourne.

“I think she became a little bit more tentative in that last game,” added Sharapova. “Of course, based on experience, you lift yourself up both mentally and physically.”

Sharapova will now face Zarina Diyas of Kazakhstan after the No.31 seed survived a battle of her own, winning 8-6 in the third set against Anna Schmiedlova.

Elsewhere in the women’s singles in the afternoon session, there were victories for 10th seed Ekaterina Makarova – 6-4 6-2 against Italian Roberta Vinci – and former French Open finalist Sara Errani, who defeated Silvia Soler-Espinosa 7-6 (3) 6-3.

Meanwhile, doubles play began on Wednesday without Serena and Venus Williams. Tournament officials did not immediately specify a reason as to why the American sisters had withdrawn from the competition, though they each face singles matches on Thursday.

In the evening match, third-seed Simona Halep eased past Australian Jarmila Gajdosova 6-2 6-2.

Read more at ESPN

Australian Open 2015: Rafael Nadal through, Ana Ivanovic out

Third seed Rafael Nadal returned to Grand Slam action with a comprehensive win over Russia’s Mikhail Youzhny.

The Spaniard, 28, won 6-3 6-2 6-2 in his first match at a Grand Slam since Wimbledon following injury and illness.

Nadal beats Youzhny in straight sets
Ivanovic one of eight women's seeds to lose
Federer & Sharapova through to second round
Teenager Kokkinakis beats 11th seed Gulbis

Second seed Roger Federer outclassed Yen-Hsun Lu 6-4 6-2 7-5 while sixth seed Andy Murray beat India’s Yuki Bhambri 6-3 6-4 7-6 (7-3).

Women’s fifth seed Ana Ivanovic suffered a shock 1-6 6-3 6-2 defeat by Czech qualifier Lucie Hradecka.

The Serb was one of eight seeds to lose but second seed Maria Sharapova, third seed Simona Halep and sixth seed Eugenie Bouchard all advanced in straight sets.

Nadal happy with Slam return

Nadal, who is a 14-time Grand Slam winner, had only played eight matches since a shock defeat by Australian teenager Nick Kyrgios at Wimbledon last year.

Before the tournament, he played down his chances of winning a second Australian Open title but showed glimpses of his best against world number 49 Youzhny.

nadal-beats-youzhny

“I was a little bit under doubt before, but I think I played without making too many mistakes and the only way to get better is to win more matches so it will probably help me,” said Nadal.

“In general I was working well, returning well and I just need to build a little bit, such as being more dynamic with the movements sometimes. But for the rest I am more or less happy.”

Ivanovic one of eight seeds ousted

Serbia’s Ivanovic appeared close to tears as she dissected her shock first-round exit against Hradecka in front of the post-match media.

“I think the whole match I didn’t really feel like myself out there. I had some issues. You know, it’s probably the worst thing that could happen,” she said.

But the 2008 runner-up was not the only seeded female to suffer an opening-day exit, with a quarter of the seeds falling.

Two-time Grand Slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, former Wimbledon finalist Sabine Lisicki, ninth seed Angelique Kerber, 16th seed Lucie Safarova, Swiss teenage sensation Belinda Bencic, Spain’sCarla Suarez-Navarro and Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova also saw their hopes ended.

Read more at BBC Sport

Australian Open: Andy Murray is sixth seed, Novak Djokovic No 1

Andy Murray, will be seeded sixth for the Australian Open, with Novak Djokovic the number one seed.

Five-time champion Serena Williams is top seed for the women’s event while Britain’s Heather Watson will have no protection in Friday’s draw.

Former champion Victoria Azarenka, who is ranked 41st in the world after an injury-hit 2014, is also unseeded.

The tournament, the first Grand Slam of the year, begins on Monday.

The seedings mirror the world rankings.

Spain’s David Ferrer is the ninth seed in the men’s draw after the withdrawal of US Open champion Marin Cilic, while world number 12 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga’s absence with a forearm strain means Ernests Gulbis moves up to 11th seed.

Britons Kyle Edmund and Liam Broady are two matches away from reaching the main draw after wins in the first round of qualification.

Men’s top 16 seeds

1. Novak Djokovic (Ser)
2. Roger Federer (Swi)
3. Rafael Nadal (Spa)
4. Stan Wawrinka (Swi)
5. Kei Nishikori (Jpn)
6. Andy Murray (GB)
7. Tomas Berdych (Cze)
8. Milos Raonic (Can)
9. David Ferrer (Spa)
10. Grigor Dimitrov (Bul)
11. Ernests Gulbis (Lat)
12. Feliciano Lopez (Spa)
13. Roberto Bautista Agut (Spa)
14. Kevin Anderson (SA)
15. Tommy Robredo (Spa)
16. Fabio Fognini (Ita)

Women’s top 16 seeds

1. Serena Williams (US)
2. Maria Sharapova (Rus)
3. Simona Halep (Rom)
4. Petra Kvitova (Cze)
5. Ana Ivanovic (Ser)
6. Agnieszka Radwanska (Pol)
7. Eugenie Bouchard (Can)
8. Caroline Wozniacki (Den)
9. Angelique Kerber (Ger)
10. Ekaterina Makarova (Rus)
11. Dominika Cibulkova (Svk)
12. Flavia Pennetta (Ita)
13. Andrea Petkovic (Ger)
14. Sara Errani (Ita)
15. Jelena Jankovic (Ser)
16. Lucie Safarova (Cze)

Read more at BBC Sport