US Open Day 5: Madness ensues, Halep, Kerber and V.Williams all out

HalepEMERGENCY POST.  The 2014 US Open had been, dare I say, a little dull through the first four days.  Suddenly, in the space of about 15 minutes, the women’s draw was given a rather hefty (and welcome) shake as Simona Halep, Angelique Kerber and Venus Williams all lost.  It’s a real shame that all these matches took place at the same time, but it kind of added to the drama.  I was watching Venus’s match with Sara Errani, which featured a stunning scoreline and a really absorbing final set.  Errani won, 6-0 0-6 7-6(5), playing some fantastic points in a gripping final set tiebreak.  Venus served for the match at *5-3, but Errani did remarkably well to prolong the rallies as Venus became passive and looked a little fatigued at the end.  I never expected Errani to win this match and she’s had some tough losses of late against big hitters.  Equally, Venus has had some heartbreaking third set tiebreak losses in the last few years and this would have been a bitter pill to swallow.  Sara deserves a huge amount of credit for her performance today.

The biggest shock of the evening saw Mirjana Lucic-Baroni defeat Simona Halep in straight sets, 7-6(6) 6-2.  Halep led 5-2 in the first set.  I didn’t see any of this match, but it’s a huge result for Lucic-Baroni, who looked stunned herself at the end.  The third surprise saw the 17-year-old Belinda Bencic defeat Angelique Kerber in straight sets, 6-1 7-5.  I believe Kerber was 5-2 up in the second set and had multiple set points.  I wrote in my preview yesterday that Bencic has got it.  However I never expected her to beat Kerber today.  If there was anyone who doubted Belinda’s credentials, just watch the final game of that match.  She served it out to love, looking completely at ease as she secured the biggest win of her career.  The mental game is so huge in tennis these days and i’ll repeat… Belinda’s got it.  Bencic plays Jelena Jankovic in the next round, which is just all round fun-ness.  A potential Venus Williams v Simona Halep 4th round match has turned into Sara Errani v Mirjana Lucic-Baroni.  Upsets are fun.

And finally, Lucie Safarova came through a brutal match with Alize Cornet, winning through 6-3 6-7 6-4… sooo happy for Lucie :-))

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