Irina-Camelia Begu, Zarina Diyas, Alison Riske, Timea Babos, Su-Wei Hsieh, Anna-Lena Friedsam and Katerina Siniakova Advance at Shenzhen Open - UBITENNIS
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Irina-Camelia Begu, Zarina Diyas, Alison Riske, Timea Babos, Su-Wei Hsieh, Anna-Lena Friedsam and Katerina Siniakova Advance at Shenzhen Open

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Irina-Camelia Begu of Romania, the third seed, dismissed Lara Arruabarrena of Spain (ranked 86) in straight sets: 6-3, 6-2. Begu had seven aces, won 34% of her service points, and did not face any breakpoints in the match. The players had met twice previously with the Spaniard winning at Basted in 2014 and the Romanian winning at Marseille in 2011. Begu holds two WTA titles: the Korean Open in 2015 and the Tashkent Open in 2012,

The seventh seed, Zarina Diyas of Kazakhstan (ranked 52), defeated qualifier Kai-Lin Zhang of China in two close sets: 6-4, 7-6. Diyas had a first serve percentage of 81 and converted four of six breakpoint opportunities to win the match.

American Alison Riske (ranked 97) upended 8th seed Annika Beck of Germany (ranked 58) in three sets at the Shenzhen Open: 6-7, 6-3, 6-2. After two close sets, the American was able to win 76% of her service points and 57% of her return points in the third set to take the match. Riske has one WTA title to her credit, the Tianjin Open In 2014. The American will face Su-Wei Hsieh in the next round.

Timea Babos of Hungary (ranked 70) defeated Evgeniya Rodina of Russia (ranked 87) in straight sets in their first meeting: 6-3, 6-2. Babos served up nine aces and won 78% of her first service points to take the match in just over an hour. Recently the 22-year-old Hungarian won her second WTA title in the OEC Taipei WTA Challenger in November 2015, her first title was at Monterrey in 2012. Babos reached the Wimbledon mixed doubles final (with partner Alexander Peya) in 2015 and the ladies doubles finals (with partner Kristina Mladenovic) at Wimbledon in 2014 as well.

Su-Wei Hsieh of Chinese Taipei (ranked 93) bested Wildcard Ying-Ying Duan of China (ranked 118) in straight sets as well: 6-4, 7-5. Hsieh also was victorious over Duan in this tournament last year. Hsieh now holds a 4-0 record head-to-head with Duan with out dropping a set. Although Duan had nine aces in the match, she also had nine double faults. In addition, Hsieh was able to take advantage of Duan’s second serve, winning 61% of those points. Hsieh has won many doubles titles (including two Grand Slam titles) with former partner Peng Shuai. In 2012, Hsieh won two WTA singles titles: the Malaysian Open and the Guangzhou International Women’s Open. Hsieh is the highest-ranked Taiwanese women’s singles player ever.

Also advancing are Anna-Lena Friedsam of Germany (ranked 95) who beat Bojana Jovanovski of Serbia (ranked 79): 6-0, 6-3, and Katerina Siniakova (ranked 102) of the Czech Republic who defeated Andreea Mitu of Romania (ranked 96): 6-3, 6-3.

Agnieszka Radwanska, Petra Kvitova, and Eugenie Bouchard are scheduled to play on Tuesday.

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Grand Slam

(VIDEO EXCLUSIVE) The Wimbledon Clash Between Djokovic And Sinner Could Have Been Better

It was an epic five-set clash but imagine how better the match would have been if both were playing well at the same time…

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Hall of Famer Steve Flink and Ubitennis’ Ubaldo Scanagatta analyse the dramatic events that unfolded on Tuesday at Wimbledon.

 

Top seed Novak Djokovic staged an epic comeback to oust Jannik Sinner in a match of two halves. Meanwhile, Cameron Norrie brought delight to the British fans.

On the other side of the draw, how will Rafael Nadal fair against the in-form Taylor Fritz? The Spaniard recently sidestepped a question about a potential new injury. 

As for the women’s draw, Ons Jabeur made history by becoming the first Arab player to reach a major quarter-final. She will next play 34-year-old mum-of-two Tatjana Maria who had never been beyond the third round of a major until now. 

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WIMBLEDON: 10 Facts About Semi-Finalist Ons Jabeur

All you need to know about the Trailblazing Tunisian who has created history at The All England Club.

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image via twitter.com/wimbledon

Second seed Ons Jabeur achieved a new milestone for both her and her country at Wimbledon on Tuesday. 

 

The world No.2 battled back from a set down to defeat Marie Bouzkova 3-6, 6-1, 6-1, to reach the last four of a major event for the first time in her career. Jabeur has now dropped only one set in five matches played and is the highest ranked player remaining in the draw. Her major breakthrough comes seven years after she made her Grand Slam debut at the 2015 Australian Open. 

“I played really good from beginning of the second set, especially having a early break kind of helps me gain confidence,” said Jabeur.
“I know it wasn’t easy playing Marie. She gets all the balls and doesn’t make, to win a point, easy for me. I’m glad I stepped in with my game. I was more aggressive in the second set, and especially tactically I was playing some angles that she didn’t like much.”

To mark Jabeur’s Wimbledon milestone, here are 10 facts to know about her:-

  1. She is the first North African player – male or female – to reach a Grand Slam semi-final. The last woman from the entire African continent to reach a major semi-final was Amanda Coetzer at the 1997 French Open. 
  2. Her win over Bouzkova is Jabeur’s 26th Tour-level win on the grass.
  3. Jabeur has now won 83 matches over the past two seasons. This is more than any other player on the WTA Tour. 
  4. Has won 21 out of her last 23 matches.
  5. She is the only Tunisian woman currently ranked in the world’s top 700.
  6. Jabeur had failed to win back-to-back matches on her three out of her four previous appearances at Wimbledon in 2017, 2018 and 2019. She reached the quarter-finals in 2021.
  7. Coming into Wimbledon she has already earned more than $6.2m in prize money in her career.
  8. She has won three Tour titles in Birmingham (2021), Madrid (2022) and Berlin (2022). 
  9. Has beaten a top 10 player four times in her career – Dominika Cibulkova (2017 French Open), Simona Halep (Beijing 2018), Sloane Stephens (Moscow 2018) and Karolina Pliskova (Doha 2020).
  10. In October 2021 she became the first Arab player (mae or female) to crack the world’s top 10 in tennis. 

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Tatjana Maria – Reaching Wimbledon Semi-Finals is ‘Amazing’ But It Doesn’t Beat Parenthood

The underdog is enjoying her best-ever run at a major 15 years after making her debut.

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Germany’s Tatjana Maria reveals people once doubted her ability to return to tennis after having her first child. Now a mother-of-two, she has secured a place in the Wimbledon semifinals. 

 

The fairytale run of the world No.103 continued on Tuesday when she ousted compatriot Jule Niemeier 6-4, 2-6, 7-5, in her quarter-final match. Until the tournament, Maria had never been beyond the third round of a major event. However, that changed with high-profile wins over Sorana Cirstea, Maria Sakkari and Jelena Ostapenko prior to Niemeier.

“It’s amazing. I mean, I tried to calm down a little bit in the locker room and to realize something, but it’s still hard to realize it,” she said of reaching the last four at Wimbledon.

Whilst some players prepare for their Grand Slam matches in the gym, Maria’s routine is somewhat unique. She began her day by taking her 8-year-old daughter to her tennis lesson. It wasn’t enough to keep her busy, she also has a 15-month-old baby.

“Outside of the court, nothing changes for me for the moment,” she said.  “I try to keep this going, everything the same. We keep going (to the tennis lessons) even if I’m playing the semifinals.”

Incredibly the 34-year-old returned to the circuit following maternity leave less than a year ago. It was during that absence that she decided to switch to a one-handed backhand. She has been ranked as high as 46th in the world and has two Tour titles to her name. 

“A lot of people who never believed I would come back. This was already after Charlotte and when I changed my backhand,” she said.
“I showed it last time already that I am back. I reached the top 50 with Charlotte, and now I’m back with my second child. Still, everybody was doubting.’
“I’m still here and I’m a fighter, and I keep going and I keep dreaming.”

Relishing in her best-ever performance at a major event, Maria is another example of a player having a breakthrough later in their career. To put her run in perspective, in the Open Era only five other women have reached the semifinals at Wimbledon after turning 34.

However, in Maria’s eyes, her achievements on the court can’t beat her top priority off the court.

“To be a mum is for me on the top of my life. So I think it helps me in tennis too because now my priority is my kids,” she explains. “I play tennis, I want to do my best, that’s all that I want. But my kids are the priority.’
“If I go out there, I want my kids to be happy, that they are healthy, that everything is okay. That’s the most important thing for me in my life.”

Maria made her Grand Slam debut back at Wimbledon in 2007. 

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