Sunday, November 28

Emma Raducanu Dismantles Shelby Rogers to Reach US Open Quarterfinals | 2021 US Tennis Open


In the scorching cauldron of Arthur Ashe Stadium, the largest tennis court on the planet, Emma Raducanu continued her astonishing three-week run from the crowded-free US Open qualifying event to the sport’s main tables by gutting another seasoned top 50 opponent. with a vital blend of intelligence and consistency. In just 65 minutes, Raducanu defeated Shelby Rogers 6-2, 6-1 to reach the quarterfinals of his first grand slam.

With her victory, Raducanu became the third qualifier in the Open era to reach the US Open quarterfinals. Unbelievably, after seven matches and three top 50 opponents, he still hasn’t lost any of his 14 sets. He reached the fourth round having lost fewer games than any other player and has shown no signs of stopping.

“Shelby is a great opponent, she has done very well at the US Open,” Raducanu said joyfully during her on-court interview as Virginia Wade, the 1968 champion, watched her. “I am very happy that I got over some of the nerves at the beginning.

As in Raducanu’s 6-0, 6-1 beating of Sara Sorribes Tormo, this was, on paper, another complex competition against an even more experienced opponent. The American, who reached 40th in her career in the summer, enjoys the best tennis of her career. After the US Open quarterfinals last year, she defeated world number one Ashleigh Barty in the previous round at 2-5 and a double-break deficit in the third set.

Rogers is a great attacker with a precise serve, but she is also adept at getting through games with the force of her willpower. He immediately demonstrated his much heavier ball to Raducanu’s previous opponents, breaking the ball on both wings in the early stages. He broke up Raducanu’s forehand two plays, eventually causing a forehand error to break serve in the opening game.

In those early stages, Raducanu’s nerves were clear when an additional series of unforced errors led her to a 0-2, 15-40 deficit. Raducanu saved both break points with two unreturned serves and ultimately held his serve, demonstrating his sense of the court while controlling his game, relying on his movement and haste to earn numerous extended points.

Emma Raducanu won in straight sets.
Emma Raducanu won in straight sets. Photograph: REX / Shutterstock

Errors began to flow from the American’s racket as Raducanu advanced three games in a row, and Rogers was finally forced to control her power. As he did so, Raducanu stepped forward slowly and began to assert himself in the exchanges, carefully moving Rogers around. Raducanu broke serve again for 4-2 and after starting the first set under pressure, Raducanu was a picture of freedom as he eliminated a forehand winner to take the set.

As has been the case throughout this fiery 14-set run, as soon as he established his pace and momentum, he raced with him almost to the finish. Raducanu’s six consecutive games won 0-2 in the first set quickly turned into nine.

Midway through the second set, Rogers couldn’t find the court. She double-faulted at break point at 0-3 and an 11-point run for Raducanu was riddled with unforced errors from Rogers. As the games progressed, Raducanu served flawlessly, limited his unforced errors, and smartly pushed Rogers down the court.

After a summer of winning and learning, Raducanu’s growing experience with each match became apparent at the end when Rogers finally started hitting the ball well. He ended Raducanu’s game streak at 11, holding serve 2-6, 1-5, and then generated three break points on Raducanu’s serve. But at no point did it look like Raducanu was going to falter and he continued to hit his right hand until the end.

After starting the summer at 366th place, Raducanu has already moved up almost 300 places in the rankings. Having just arrived on the scene, Raducanu is one victory away from becoming number one in Britain.

In the quarterfinals, Raducanu will get his first shot at one of the top 30 opponents facing 11th-seeded Olympic gold medalist Belinda Bencic. Bencic continued his great summer form by beating seventh-seeded Iga Swiatek 7-6 (12) 6-3. The victory is her thirteenth victory in her last 14 singles matches since taking gold in singles and silver in women’s doubles in Tokyo.

When the current teen prodigy was asked in her on-court interview about the former teen prodigy, while basking in the glow of another amazing achievement, it was the last thing on Raducanu’s mind: “Belinda is a great player who is in great shape. , so I know I’ll have to bring it on Wednesday, ”he said. “He’ll just be the one to dictate and I’m not really thinking about tennis at the moment. I’ll think about it tomorrow. “


www.theguardian.com

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