Tuesday’s Set Points, WTA Madrid: Halep, Begu & Cirstea all through to the last 16

Set PointsAfter the excitement of Sunday and Monday, Tuesday was a much quieter day in Madrid with nine second round matches. The most intriguing match from the day session was CoCo Vandeweghe up against Laura Siegemund. Both are well known for their antics on court! Despite wasting a set and a break lead, Vandeweghe eventually ended Siegemund’s winning streak with a three set victory, 6-2 4-6 6-3. Vandeweghe’s serve played a big part in her victory, winning 53% of points behind her second serve and holding all five service games in the decider.

It’s rare I find myself rooting for Siegemund but I really was in this match 😂😂😂

Sam Stosur had a drama-free second round win over Mariana Duque-Mariño, 6-3 7-5. Stosur saved the two break points that she faced including one when serving for the match. Stosur will now play the defending champion, Simona Halep in a repeat of last year’s semi-final.

Halep survived a second round scare against Roberta Vinci to prevail, 6-3 2-6 7-6(2). From the middle of the second set, Vinci produced some gorgeous all-court tennis, dominating up at the net and taking control with her forehand. Vinci served for the match at *5-3 in the third set – Halep played a decent return game, breaking back with a forehand winner. In the deciding set tiebreak, Vinci retreated and her forehand became increasingly wayward.

Credit to Simona for this win – she does have a habit of backing off against in-form opponents but this was an excellent result for her as she stayed competitive and turned the match around. Another string to her bow in terms of building confidence…

The last time that Kiki Bertens and Timea Bacsinszky played each other they were on court for three hours and 22 minutes. This time round, the result was reversed with a one-sided scoreline and a clinical display from Bertens to win, 6-2 6-2. Bertens served very well, winning 80% of first serve points and 65% of second serve points. She dominated the majority of points with some sound hitting from the baseline and is looking good again on the clay. Bacsinszky just couldn’t get her game going today as shown by the stats below.

In other matches…

Wang Qiang won the battle of Chinese qualifiers, beating Zheng Saisai, 6-2 3-6 6-2. Wang Qiang is enjoying her best ever start to a year with a 20-8 W-L record. She has already doubled her number of career wins on clay in the space of two tournaments in Prague and Madrid.

Sorana Cirstea is one step away from matching last year’s quarter-final result in Madrid – the Romanian player had a surprisingly routine win over CiCi Bellis, 6-3 6-2. Cirstea is one to watch on clay…

Misaki Doi dropped just three games against qualifier, Donna Vekic, 6-1 6-2. Doi had lost five on the trot (all losses in straight sets) heading into Madrid this year.

Irina-Camelia Begu came from a set down to beat Johanna Larsson, 4-6 7-6(5) 6-3. Begu had lost to Larsson twice before this year but seems to enjoy Madrid where she is bidding to reach the quarter-finals of the tournament for the third consecutive year.

In the late night match, Oceane Dodin scored the biggest win of her career, defeating the number four seed, Dominika Cibulkova, 6-2 6-4.

Wednesday’s schedule will see all eight third round matches take to the court. As is accustomed with Madrid, the women have been mostly shunned from the top two courts. It’s not a good look for the WTA and it’s one of many reasons why I really dislike Madrid as a tournament!

The highlight of the day will see the world number one, Angelique Kerber take on Eugenie Bouchard. I’m fascinated to see how Bouchard backs up her win over Maria Sharapova. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see a letdown from Genie but this is a decent match-up for her and i’m still not convinced by Kerber’s level, particularly on clay.

Who you got?

 

And finally, I enjoyed hearing an update on Jamie Hampton in the latest episode of the No Challenges Remaining Podcast.

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