Tennis

Clijsters stops Stosur to set up Venus battle

Belgium's Kim Clijsters during her match against Samantha Stosur of Australia during a quarterfinal match at the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York on Tuesday.

Belgium's Kim Clijsters during her match against Samantha Stosur of Australia during a quarterfinal match at the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York on Tuesday.  

Holder Kim Clijsters won her 19th straight match at the US Open Tuesday, setting up a semi-final with fellow two-time champion Venus Williams.

The second seed claimed a break-strewn quarter-final over Australian Samantha Stosur, which featured more than 80 unforced errors between the pair, coming up the winner 6-4, 5-7, 6-3. Williams who won the event in 2000 and 2001, put out Roland Garros champion Francesca Schiavone 7-6 (7-5), 6-4.

Both matches were plagued by swirling wind which made life on court a huge challenge.

Clijster managed the only holds in the final set, in the first and last games. “Over the last ten days it’s been tough to get used to the weather,” said the Belgian. “Every match has been a battle.

“Mentally you have to try and beat it. I played more aggressive in the third set even if my serve was not going so well. But I won and that’s important.

“Venus is a great competitor and is playing some great tennis. It will be a fun match. It’s a challenge to be in another semi-final here.” In men’s play, Swiss Stanislas Wawrinka dealt another blow to American tennis hopes as he left the host nation without a men’s quarter-finalist for the second year in a row after a 7-6 (11-9), 6-7 (5-7), 7-5, 4-6, 6-4 defeat of Sam Querrey.

Wawrinka, coached by Roger Federer’s one-time mentor Peter Lundgren, reached the last eight of a Grand Slam for the first time in his career.

It was a marathon lasting just over four and a half hours with plot twists galore. Querrey saved a match point in the final game as Wawrinka was unable to smash out of a lob. But an error into the net gave the Swiss a second wind.

“It was an amazing match to win here,” said Wawrinka. “Sam’s a great player, to beat him in five sets is crazy.

“I was just focused on my game, especially with the serve, I was not really happy with my serve. It didn’t help me so much. I tried to adapt. With the wind it was not easy.” Wawrinka achieved the first Grand Slam quarter-final of his career with a winning backhand volley past the frustrated American. It’s the first time that Switzerland has two men in the last eight of a Grand Slam.

“It’s the first time for me, so for sure I am very happy with that,” he said.

Wawrinka’s knockout of the last American in the field came on the heels of his defeat of 2008 finalist Andy Murray.

The 27th-ranked Wawrinka, who earned a Top 10 spot in spring 2008, will bid to expand his success when he plays for the semi-finals against Russian 12th seed Mikhail Youzhny, who beat Tommy Robredo 7-5, 6-2, 4-6, 6-4.

“He is playing very strong from the baseline,” said Wawrinka, “We’ve played a few times and had close matches.” Youzhny is into the last eight at a major for the fourth time in his career, advancing with 50 winners.

Robredo was one of five surviving Spaniards in the top half, a fourth—round group which includes an entire Davis Cup team.

Why you should pay for quality journalism - Click to know more

Recommended for you
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Apr 1, 2020 5:55:52 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/tennis/Clijsters-stops-Stosur-to-set-up-Venus-battle/article15907456.ece

Next Story