Set Points, Miami Open Day 4: Serena survives, Lucie’s comeback & Aga’s hotshots (again!)

The women’s seeds from the top half of the Miami Open draw came out to play on Thursday. Six fell, but ten survived with a number of tantalising third rounders set for Saturday. In case you missed it, there are previews for two second rounders on Friday featuring Angelique Kerber v Barbora Strycova and Garbiñe Muguruza v Dominika Cibulkova HERE… it’s going to be a great weekend of tennis :-). Here’s a snappy Set Points for you with some of the talking points from day 4 at the Miami Open.

Set PointsSerena Williams won her first match in Miami, overcoming a mid-match blip to defeat Christina McHale, 6-3 5-7 6-2. Serena had led 5-3 in the second set and even had a match point but huge credit to McHale for forcing a decider. Serena cleaned up her game in the third set with her serve firing on all cylinders. Serena’s reaction after breaking to 5-2 in the third set was EVERYTHING.

McHale has had a really solid start to the year; she won an ITF title in Maui immediately after the Australian Open, reached the semi-finals of Acapulco and defeated Caroline Garcia and Garbiñe Muguruza en route to reaching the third round of Indian Wells. Serena had some kind words to say about her after the match…

The highest seed to fall on Thursday was Lucie Safarova… she was defeated by Yanina Wickmayer, 2-6 3-6. As we already knew, it’s going to be a long road back for Lucie, who posted some very moving words on her Facebook page. I love her attitude and fighting spirit, and it’s why I am a fan. I’m rooting for Lucie all the way!!!

Thanks to Jake Kulick (player3jrk) on Twitter for sharing photos from a recent Lucie-Petra practice in Miami… love, love, LOVE!

The one scoreline that made my eyes pop out was Heather Watson’s 6-3 6-0 (!) victory over Sloane Stephens. The result wasn’t a huge shock because Watson, prior to this match-up, led the head-to-head, 4-2, but the scoreline was a shock. Watson played a great match and constantly unsettled Stephens, playing the more aggressive tennis… Stephens will want to forget that second set QUICKLY. Loved the handshake though…

And i’m pondering…

I was travelling for much of Thursday night but I did get home in time to see the last hour and a half of Petkovic-Garcia. It was a thoroughly entertaining match with enough twists and turns to give you motion sickness. Garcia won, 7-6(5) 3-6 7-6(2) in two hours and 49 minutes. Credit to Garcia for reining in the errors at the end to play a quality third set tiebreak. For Petkovic, she’s had two rough draws in IW-Miami (Strycova and Garcia) and two rough losses (5-7 and 6-7 in third sets)… but still, her game seems to be in a much better place than in 2015.

Loveee this picture of Caroline Garcia taken by Christopher Levy (@tennis_shots) on Twitter.

Petkovic is back in action at the Volvo Car Open in Charleston where she’s due a better draw! A huge shout out to Andrea Petkovic Fans (@Petko_no1) on Twitter, one of the best fan accounts on Twitter.

The match that I was most excited about on Thursday was Simona Halep v Daria Kasatkina… Halep came through in the end, 6-3 7-5. I really enjoyed the post linked below from Casey Bray (@NoleLisickiFam) on Twitter, a fan of both players, with his take on the match.

Agnieszka Radwanska was at it again on Thursday, producing a super performance to defeat Alizé Cornet, 6-0 6-1. Of the three shots linked below, i’m in awe of the third one, the drop shot… HOW DID SHE DO THAT?

Great to see Cornet back and lovely words from the Frenchwoman on Twitter after the match.

Love these pics from Mike (@mrenzaero) on Twitter from the Radwanska-Cornet match.

And finally, WTA Reactions (@WTAReactions) on Twitter once again manages to encapsulate how i’m feeling… FOUR DAY WEEKEND! 😀

6 thoughts on “Set Points, Miami Open Day 4: Serena survives, Lucie’s comeback & Aga’s hotshots (again!)

  1. The uncertainty that seems to creep into Serena’s game lately is really unsettling!
    I thought Halep played a really strong match though she did throw in a couple of really poor games too and she’ll need to hone her focus a tad more if she wants to go deep here.

    My favourites all got wins aside from Kasatkina, who I thought gave a good account her herself in a big match.
    Really looking forward to Garcia vs Kuznetsova, Svitolina vs Wozniacki and Ivanovic vs Bacsinszky.

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    • Yes, yes and yes! Some great matches tomorrow. First match for Serena in Miami and she got the win so I think she’ll be fine. I only watched the third set but serving well.

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  2. I absolutely LOVE the WtaReactions Tweet…hilarious and exactly how I feel as I haven’t watched live tennis in a long long time!!! (well IW finals excluded but I adore the earlier stages of tournaments)

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  3. “Of the three shots linked below, i’m in awe of the third one, the drop shot… HOW DID SHE DO THAT?”

    I’ve watched it several times now James, and I’m still not sure, but it looks like Aga used a lot of backspin.

    “I think we’d better just sit back and admire it, Chris” (Jo Durie on Eurosport, commenting on a moment during Aga’s win over Vika in the QFs of the 2014 Australian Open).

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