Aryna Sabalenka Cruises into Last Four of US Open - UBITENNIS
Connect with us


Aryna Sabalenka Cruises into Last Four of US Open



image via WTA Twitter

By Anshu Taneja

Aryna Sabalenka, who is going to be the new World Number 1 on Monday, raced into the last four of the US Open with a comprehensive 6-1, 6-4 victory over Qinwen Zheng in just 1 hour and 13 minutes, highlighting her credentials as the hot favourite for the women’s title.


“I think I definitely played great tennis today,” Sabalenka said on court after her win. “I’m super happy with the win against her, she played incredible tennis at the US Open this year.”

The number two seed, who had dropped just 16 games in first four matches played in New York, won the first seven points and broke serve immediately for a 2-0 lead after a Zheng forehand hit the net-cord and drifted wide. Moments later she was already 4-0 up and the Chinese 23rd seed, who was named WTA Newcomer of the Year in 2022, had only won three points.

Zheng’s most impressive scalp in reaching her first Grand Slam quarter-final was her surprisingly quick straight sets victory over much fancied Ons Jabeur in the previous round, a match in which she was able to exert her hard flat shots. But facing the brutal baseline power of the Belarussian in hot and humid conditions on the world-famous Arthur Ashe stadium was a true baptism of fire and she crumbled in the first set.

With the roof partially closed to give the players and fans some UV protection, Sabalenka cruised to the first set 6-1 in just 27 minutes with excellent serving stats, winning 89% of points both on her first and second serves, along with eight winners and converting all four net approaches. 

Zheng, who was aiming to become the third Chinese woman to reach the semis in the last ten years following Li Na in 2013 and Peng Shuai in 2014, started the second set much better and held her first three service games and even made small inroads on her opponents serve, although she couldn’t go as far as carving out a breakpoint. 

Although winning a 21-shot rally in the fifth game gave her renewed confidence and belief, she continued to miss first serves at important moments and was under more pressure in the seventh game when a double fault followed by three unforced errors meant she surrendered serve just when the crowd was hoping for a true contest. Even by gifting two double faults in her next game, Sabalenka still easily held for 5-3 before going to close out the match two games later. 

“Of course I’m happy … it’s incredible for me and my family,” Sabalenka commented on her rise to No.1.
“But I have some things still to do in New York this year and I’ll think about becoming No.1 after the US Open.”

In the first meeting between the two players, Sabalenka hit 17 winners to 13 and just 12 unforced errors compared to 16 from Zheng. But she won 55 points overall compared to 35 which underlined the true gulf in class.  She now faces the winner of Madison Keys and Marketa Vondrousova for a spot in the US Open Final. 

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Latest news

Asian Games Champion Qinwen Zheng Reveals Shock Departure Of Coach Fissette



Image via

China’s Qinwen Zheng says she feels ‘hurt’ by the decision of her former coach to end their collaboration in order to work with another player. 


The US Open quarter-finalist had been working with Belgium’s Wim Fissette in recent weeks following the departure of Pere Riba who is now the coach of Coco Gauff. Fissette has a wealth of experience in women’s tennis after working with the likes of Kim Clijsters and Naomi Osaka. However, Zheng says she is now looking for a new mentor.

“I understand his decision, but my family and I feel hurt. Right now I don’t want to talk about this person (Fissette),’ journalist Bendou Zhang quoted her as saying. 

Fissette is yet to comment on his departure. He had previously coached former world No.1 Osaka between 2019-2022 and during this period she won two of her four Grand Slam titles. The American-based Japanese player is on maternity leave from the sport and gave birth to her first child in July.

20-year-old Zheng is currently ranked 23rd in the world and won her maiden WTA title in Palermo earlier this year. She is the youngest player from her country to have reached the quarter-finals of a Grand Slam in the Open Era following her run at Flushing Medows. This year she has beaten top 10 players Ons Jabeur and Daria Kasatkina. 

Zheng’s latest career milestone is winning gold at the Asian Games on Friday. in the final, she defeated Zhu Lin 6-2, 6-4, in the blistering Hangzhou heat.

“The feeling was incredible,” Zheng said. “I’m really happy about that. That was not an easy match today and also yesterday (in semifinal against Alex Eala). All of them are good fighters.”

It is not clear who Zheng will be working with during the Asian swing. 

Continue Reading

Latest news

Daria Kasatkina Criticises Decision To Not Use Roof At Sweltering Pan Pacific Open



Image via WTA twitter

Daria Kasatkina has taken a swipe at organizers at the Toray Pan Pacific Open for not using the roof to cover their premier court on Thursday due to the heat. 


The Russian played her second round match against Despina Papamichail in temperatures around 30 degrees with the humidity making it feel even warmer. Kasatkina battled to a 6-4, 6-4, win after spending more than two hours on the court. She dropped serve four times in the match but managed to break Papamichail seven times en route to victory. 

Speaking on the court following his latest tour win, the world No.13 admitted that she struggled in the conditions and implied that she believed the roof should have been closed to shield the players from the sun. Tokyo, which is where the tournament is staged, has experienced a record-breaking number of ‘extremely hot’ days this year with their autumn season being warmer than usual. Something that some warn could be a more regular occurrence due to climate change.

“We cannot do much about it. We are using the ice towels and some supplements to keep you hydrated. By at the end, you cannot fight with something you cannot control,” Kasatkina commented on the conditions during her on-court interview.
“I think in these kinds of conditions, if you have a roof, better maybe to close it. If you have these opportunities, better to use it than to make players almost die on the field.” She added. 

Kasatkina is through to her seventh Tour quarter-final of the season. Awaiting her in the next round will be second seed Jessica Pegula who beat Spain’s Cristina Bucșa 6-1, 6-2, in her second round match on Wednesday. It will be only the second Tour meeting between the two players and their first on a hard court. 

Elsewhere in Tokyo, another player to reach the last eight in France’s Caroline Garcia who beat Anhelina Kahlinina 6-4, 6-3. Meanwhile, Anastasia Pavlychenkova defeated Czech Republic’s Linda Noskova 6-3, 4-6, 6-0. 

Continue Reading

Latest news

Barbora Krejcikova Does The Double In San Jose



After what has been a challenging past few weeks on the Tour, Barbora Krejcikova has returned to the winner’s circle by claiming both the singles and doubles titles at the San Diego Open. 


The world No.13 battled to a marathon 6-4, 2-6, 6-4, win over Sofia Kenin in what was a clash of the former Grand Slam champions. Krejcikova was pushed to her limits throughout the two-and-a-half-hour clash with there being no break in the decider until the final game. It is the second singles title the Czech has won on the WTA Tour this season after Dubai and her seventh overall. 

“Normally I wouldn’t be here,” said Krejcikova, who received a wild card to play in the tournament “I really want to thank them (the tournament organisers). It was very special. I really enjoyed my stay here.”

Krejcikova’s run to the trophy has also seen her score wins over Beatriz Haddad Maia and Danielle Collins earlier in the week. She is the first player from her country to win the tournament. 

Following on from that triumph, the 27-year-old then clinched the doubles title alongside compatriot Katerina Siniakova. The duo beat Collins and Coco Vandeweghe 6-1, 6-4.

Krejcikova came into San Jose on a four-match losing streak which started at Wimbledon where she was forced to withdraw from her secound round clash due to a left leg injury. 

“I came here with not really good statistics after my injury, I didn’t actually win any matches,” she said. “So I just came here and I pretty much was hoping and believing that I could get the first win and go from there. It’s pretty special to be sitting here having won [the title].”

It is only the second time in Krejcikova’s career that she has won both the singles and doubles titles at the same event. The first time she did so was at the 2021 French Open where her partner in the doubles was also Siniakova.

Continue Reading