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Rediff.com  » Sports » Rogers Cup: Djokovic stunned; Halep dominates Venus

Rogers Cup: Djokovic stunned; Halep dominates Venus

Last updated on: August 10, 2018 11:43 IST

Djokovic stunned by Greek teen Tsitsipas in Toronto third round

Novak Djokovic

IMAGE: Novak Djokovic of Serbia walks off the court after being defeated by Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece. Photograph: Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

Greek teenager Stefanos Tsitsipas secured the biggest win of his career when he sent Wimbledon champion Novak Djokovic packing in the third round of the Rogers Cup with a stunning 6-3, 6-7(5), 6-3 win on Thursday.

A confident Tsitsipas sent a blistering forehand to the back corner while the ninth-seeded Serbian was heading the other way on his first match point to secure the win before looking at his box in disbelief.

 

"It's a dream of any kid out there in this world, any kid that's playing tennis, to beat these kinds of players, so I can call it the best moment of my life," a shocked Tsitsipas said in an on-court interview. "I never expected to beat such a top-ranked player and such a high-respected player like Novak."

Tsitsipas, who turns 20 on Sunday, relied on his serve and forehand combination to get by Djokovic, who was competing in his first tournament since collecting his 13th grand slam title at the All England Club last month.

The Greek teen made some crucial errors near the end of the second set that allowed Djokovic, a four-time winner of the tournament, to set up a decider.

However, Tsitsipas did well to break Djokovic for a 2-0 lead in the third set and never looked back.

For the resident of Athens, who arrived in Toronto fresh off a run to the semi-finals in Washington where he lost to German world number three Alexander Zverev, the win is the latest in a breakthrough campaign during which he has reached the quarter-finals or better at seven ATP main tour events.

Tsitsipas, who beat Austrian seventh seed Dominic Thiem in the second round here, will next face either second seed Zverev or Russian qualifier Daniil Medvedev.

Halep dominates Venus to end long day

Simona Halep

IMAGE: Simona Halep of Romania waits to be served by Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia (not pictured). Photograph: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Top seed Simona Halep made quick work of Venus Williams 6-2, 6-2 on Thursday to end a long day at the Rogers Cup that saw her advancing to the quarter-finals.

Halep had to grind out a 7-6(9), 4-6 7-5 win over Russian Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova earlier in the day, completing a match that began Wednesday but was halted due to rain.

Pavlyuchenkova, ranked 28th, took leads of 2-0 and 4-2 in the third set but was unable to finish off Halep, who won three games in a row to seize a 5-4 advantage and eventually went on to break Pavlyuchenkova for match point in the 12th game.

"It was a great match, a great fight. She played unbelievable and was fighting until the end," Halep told reporters in an on-court interview.

Against Williams, the 26-year-old Romanian saved the only break point she faced in the 74-minute match, and she converted five of her nine break opportunities.

Second seed Dane Caroline Wozniacki went down in her first match of the tournament, losing 5-7, 6-2, 7-6(4) to Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus.

Wozniacki was coming off a disappointing second round loss at Wimbledon and could not turn things around.

Great Britain's Johanna Konta was also forced to complete a pair of matches on Thursday. She finished off Belarus' Victoria Azarenka 6-3, 6-1 but lost later to fifth seed Ukrainian Elina Svitolina 6-3, 6-4.

"She was mentally more warmed up going into the match," Svitolina said. "That's what I thought. I was like, 'C'mon, you have to be ready (because) she will be straight in the match.' I think that really helped me."

France's Caroline Garcia cruised past former world number one Maria Sharapova of Russia 6-3, 6-2, the same score by which Dutchwoman Kiki Bertens upset eighth seed Czech Petra Kvitova.

US Open champion Sloane Stephens, the third seed, beat Spain's Carla Suarez Navarro 6-2, 7-5 to book her spot in the quarter-finals, where she will face Latvia's Anastasija Sevastova, a 6-3, 7-6(2) winner over German 10th seed Julia Goerges.

Belgian Elise Mertens, Australian Ashleigh Barty and Latvian Anastasija Sevastova also advanced with wins.

Source:
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