April 14, 2024

Open Court

MORE TENNIS THAN YOU'LL EVER NEED

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There wasn’t a lot of drama on Day 9 at the US Open, as the quarterfinals on both the men’s and women’s side were warpped up and the semifinal lineups now complete.

The most dramatic match of the day came between No. 3 seed Serena Williams and unseeded Tsvetana Pironkova, who is playing on a protected ranking of No. 123 and is back on the Tour for the first time in three years.

(Both are moms – in case you haven’t been watching the network coverage and haven’t heard this mentioned every five minutes).

Serena remained calm after being bamboozled a bit in the first set, and prevailed 4-6, 6-3, 6-2.

Here’s what she said.

Pironkova can go home with her first “actual” ranking in years (she’ll check inside the top 160), and a very nice cheque.

The highly-anticipated match between lifelong friends Andrey Rublev and Daniil Medvedev ended up being a masterclass from Medvedev, who just had an answer for everything Rublev asked.

Medvedev felt some particular urgency towards the end of the third set because he was suffering some cramping, which in the end just made it worse for his younger Russian pal.

Rublev, a brilliant talent who also is somewhat of a cult favorite, will be back. And he’ll have some insight on what he needs to do to get to the next level.

Azarenka dominates

You would have expected the match between Victoria Azarenka and No. 16 seed Elise Mertens to have been a tightly-contested battle.

Both are on form.

But it was all Vika one-way traffic.

It was as thought she knew where every ball was going before Mertens even thought of hitting it.

Mertens didn’t even manage to hold serve the entire match. And she has a pretty good serve.

But what she didn’t have was much of a Plan B. She didn’t, couldn’t find anything to detail the Vika HGV.

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