Tennis in the Land – Cleveland
Poland’s Magda Linette upset top-seeded Daria Kasatkina from Russia in the quarter-finals at the Tennis in the Land tournament in Cleveland, Ohio, 6-1 6-2, on Thursday to advance to the semi-finals where she will play Romania’s Irina Camelia Begu.
I was really aggressive, serving well and moving well. Hopefully, I can do it at least one more time here. Irina Camelia Begu
In the second semi-final, Anett Kontaveit from Estonia will take on Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo on Friday.
Linette, Begu and Sorribes Tormo have not lost a set in their 3 matches here this week.
Linette, the No 6 seed converted 5 of her 6 break points in the match and used her precise shot-making to unsettle Kasatkina, the World No 27, and avenge the loss she suffered to the Russian in San José 3 weeks ago.
“I’m glad I was able to take a step back and take a look at me after that match,” said Linette, who is ranked 51. “After I lost the last time we played, I was ready to be on the other side today.”
Linette outplayed Kasatkina, winning 57 points to the Russian’s 32, completing the upset with a stunning cross-court winner.
Her next opponent in the semis of the inaugural WTA 250 tournament is Begu, who upset Aliaksandra Sasnovich in a match between the World No 74 and 99, 6-2 6-4.
The Romania held her serve all 9 times on her 31st birthday against the Belarusian to make her first WTA hard-court semi-final since 2018 in Shenzhen, China.
“I was really aggressive, serving well and moving well,” Begu said. “Hopefully, I can do it at least one more time here.”
Meanwhile, Kontaveit, the 2nd seed from Estonia, outlasted Olympic doubles gold medallist Katerina Siniakova, 6-3 5-7 6-2, in the second-longest match of the tournament at 2 hours 39 minutes.
The Czech, who is ranked 53 in singles, trailed 4-3 in the second set before breaking Kontaveit twice to force a decider.
Kontaveit got herself back on track to win her 2nd 3-setter in Cleveland to move into the semi-finals against 7th-seeded Sara Sorribes Tormo.
The Spaniard, ranked 43, was a 6-3 6-1 winner over 9th-seed Shuai Zhang of China, who is ranked 6 places behind her.
“It’s been amazing,” Sorribes Tormo said. “I thought I played a very complete match because she played pretty good. I’m having a lot of fun.”
WTA Chicago Women’s Open
Over in Chicago, top seed Elina Svitolina from Ukraine cruised into the semi-finals with a 6-1 6-0 win over France’s Kristina Mladenovic, where she will meet Sweden’s Rebecca Peterson, who advanced when Czech Tereza Martincova retired from their quarter-final.
Fresh off a bronze medal in Tokyo and recently married to Gael Monfils, Svitolina is favourite for the title here, while Peterson had not won back to back matches on the tour since May.
The Swede’s run in Chicago is only the 3rd occasion she has managed to do so, but she has proven to be a threat to anyone on a given day, and has won 2 titles on hard courts in China. Her play in Chicago is reminiscent of that form.
The second semi-final has yet to be determined as the quarter-final between Ukraine’s Marta Kostyuk, the 8th seed, and Varvara Gracheva from Russia was suspended overnight because of rain, with the score standing at 7-6(4), 3-5.
The winner will take on Alizé Cornet after the 9th-seeded Frenchwoman ousted Marketa Vondrousova from the Czech Republic, 2-6 6-4 6-3.