Maria Sharapova Unconcerned By Shock Exits Of Seeds - UBITENNIS
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Maria Sharapova Unconcerned By Shock Exits Of Seeds

After she beat Jelena Ostapenko in straight sets, Maria Sharapova talked about the surprise losses in the women’s draw and her performance.

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Maria Sharapova advanced to the fourth round of the 2018 US Open last night with a 6-3 6-2 victory over Jelena Ostapenko, and she now has a great chance to go further because ten of the world’s top 15 players have been knocked out.

 

However, it has been a theme of the Russian’s career that she only focuses on what she has doing, and she says nothing has changed in that regard.

“I’m fortunate to be in the draw and playing,” Sharapova said in her press conference. “Whoever I have to play, I want to beat.”

“There have definitely been surprises in the draw. But I don’t know if it’s any different than last year or the year before. I don’t really compare. I actually haven’t watched any TV or any tennis on TV.”

She continued, “I know the scores, I know what’s going on, but I’m not deeply enthusiastic about finding out why those results happened.”

Sharapova pleased with improved display

Sharapova’s last-16 opponent will be Carla Suarez-Navarro, and she will go into that match with confidence after a composed display against the 10th seed.

“I knew that I needed to produce a better performance than in my previous round,” she said. “I did just enough to win that match and finished off strong.”

“I felt pretty confident throughout (against Ostapenko) after seeing the length of time she had to work for the first game (on her serve).”

The Russian continued, “I hit quite well and served much better, and I think putting all those things together gave me a good enough scoreline.”

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Early in her career, Sharapova often tried to finish points more quickly than she did last night, but she believes that patience, allied with better movement, aided her against the Latvian.

“I think I was solid,” the 2006 US Open champion said. “We are both very aggressive players. I thought I just did enough to get another ball back and moved really well.”

“In the points I lost, maybe I just didn’t take enough steps. I didn’t feel she was hurting me as much and I felt like I had a little bit more time today. I was also a little bit more alert on my feet and I think that helped me.”

Sharapova: we can’t control what people say

When it was put to Sharapova that her progress at the US Open this year has gone a little bit under the radar, she did not seem too bothered.

“I don’t think I really sense that because it doesn’t change what I do to prepare or how I go about the tournament,” the Russian said.

“There are a lot of things outside of the court, whether it’s the media, opinions, fans or favourites – those have never really been in my control. I don’t intend them to be, ever.”

She continued, “As long as I’m showing up and putting myself out there and training – putting in the effort – that’s all that really matters from my end. As far as everything else, you all know there’s very little we can control.”

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Madison Keys Marches Into Cincinnati Final With Win Over Kenin

Madison Keys set up a intriguing final against Svetlana Kuznetsova with an excellent straight-sets win over Sofia Kenin in the semi-finals.

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Madison Keys (@CincyTennis on Twitter)

Madison Keys advanced to her ninth career final with an impressive 7-5 6-4 win over Sofia Kenin at the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati.

 

The American, 24, has endured a patchy year on the WTA tour. But she found a rich vein of form in the early rounds to defeat Garbine Muguruza, Daria Kasatkina and Wimbledon champion Simona Halep.

And by the time Keys set about dispatching Venus Williams in straight sets in the quarter-final, she looked full of confidence.

The World No.18 started in similar fashion against Kenin. She dominated her first two service games and broke the younger American in the fourth game to establish a 3-1 lead. She then held off a couple of break points in game five to increase her advantage to 4-1.

But Kenin is a fighter and she had no intention of giving up on the set. She broke Keys in game nine to make it 5-4 and then saved two break points to level the score.

The older American did not panic. She held serve comfortably and then hit a couple of excellent winners to break the 20-year-old for the second time in the set and take it 7-5.

Keys triumphs in close second set

There were a few momentum swings in the second set. Keys held to love in the first game but dropped her serve during a sloppy third game. Kenin then consolidated the break with a comfortable hold.

In response, the World No.18 fired down three aces as she held serve to love in just 42 seconds. She then unleashed a stream of winners to break the younger American and level the score at 3-3.

Both women played superb return games as they traded breaks to move the score along to 4-4. Then Keys unleashed a series of ferocious groundstrokes to repel a break point and hold for 5-4.

After an intense conversation with her father at the changeover, Kenin looked a bit subdued in game ten. She sent down a weak second serve on the second point which was punished by a backhand winner from the World No.18.

The 20-year-old made a double-fault to slip 15-30 behind. Then she came into the net and could only watch and admire as Keys guided a sublime backhand pass into the opposite service box for a winner that set up two match points.

The World No.18 did not have to wait long to celebrate victory, as an unforced error from Kenin on the next point sealed her win.

Keys will play Svetlana Kuznetsova in the final. The Russian continued her impressive week with an eye-catching 6-2 6-4 win over World No.2 Ashleigh Barty.

“I’m very happy to be in the final,” the American said. “Sveta has been playing incredibly well. She is a craftier player with a little bit of everything. It will be a pretty difficult match but I’m looking forward to it.”

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Madison Keys sets up an all-American semifinal against Sofia Kenin in Cincinnati

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Madison Keys hit 32 winners and never dropped her serve in her 6-2 6-3 win over Venus Williams in 77 minutes in an all-American quarter final at the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati to reach her first semifinal since winning the Volvo Car Open title in Charleston.

 

Keys broke three times and faced just two break points in the match. She earned her first break in the fourth game to open up a 3-1 lead, as Venus made three double faults. Keys went up a double break at 15 to seal the first set 6-3.

Williams saved four break points to hold her serve in the fourth game for 2-2, after hitting her first winner of the match, but Keys sealed the win with her only break in the eighth game of the second set and a hold at love setting up an all-American semifinal clash against Sofia Kenin

“It was nice to see against a really aggressive player like Venus being able to defend as well as I did. Overall, I am pretty happy with almost everything I did tonight. I am happy with how well I served. She is a very good returner, and being able to have fairly straightforward service games was my favourite part. The biggest thing, after having a couple of tough losses in the last tournaments I have played, being able to bounce back, and especially after my first round here, being able to get that win and then just building on that”,said Keys.

 

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Svetlana Kuznetsova completes her come-back by reaching the semifinal in Cincinnati

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Two-time Grand Slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova came back from one set down to beat Karolina Pliskova 3-6 7-6 (7-2) 6-3 to secure her spot in the semifinal of the Western and Southern Open in Cincinnati.

 

Kuznetsova, who was sidelined by a knee injury in the first half of the season, bounced back last week when she reached the third round at the Rogers Cup in Toronto. She beat Anastasija Sevastova, Dayana Yastremska and Sloane Stephens en route to the semifinal.

Kuznetsova hit 30 winners and broke three times to close out the match after 2 hours and 23 minutes.

Pliskova converted her only break point at love in the second game to win the opening set 6-3.

Pliskova saved three break points to hold serve at deuce in the fourth game before breaking serve at 15 to take a 4-3 lead. Kuznetsova broke back at 15 in the 10th game to draw level to 5-5. Kuznetsova earned four set points and converted her first chance to seal the tie-break 7-2.

Kuznetsova went up a break at love in the third game of the decisive set to take a 2-1 lead. Both Pliskova and Kuznetsova saved two break points in the fifth and sixth games. Kuznetsova sealed the win with a double break in the ninth game.

The Russian player set up a semifinal against 2019 Roland Garros champion Ashleigh Barty, who came back from one set down to beat Maria Sakkari 5-7 6-2 6-0.

 

 

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