Rybakina tops Azarenka to make Australian Open women's final
Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina reached her second final in the past three Grand Slam tournaments by beating Victoria Azarenka 7-6 (4), 6-3 at the Australian Open on Thursday. Rybakina added to what already was an impressive run through a string of top opponents. Azarenka, the champion at Melbourne Park in 2012 and 2013, joined a list of players eliminated by Rybakina over the past two weeks that includes No. 1 Iga Swiatek and No. 17 Jelena Ostapenko — both owners of major titles — and 2022 Australian Open runner-up Danielle Collins.news.yahoo.com
No handshake after Ukraine, Belarus players meet at US Open
A Ukrainian player declined to shake hands with Victoria Azarenka after the three-time U.S. Open runner-up from Belarus beat her at Flushing Meadows on Thursday. Marta Kostyuk waited at the net with her racket held up, which Azarenka tapped with her racket following her 6-2, 6-3 victory. Belarus helped Russia launch its invasion of Ukraine in February, and Kostyuk said it had been on her mind since she saw the U.S. Open draw that she may have to play Azarenka in the second round.news.yahoo.com
Barty goes distance, tops Azarenka to reach Miami quarters
Ashleigh Barty of Australia, returns to Victoria Azarenka of Belarus, during the Miami Open tennis tournament, Monday, March 29, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier)MIAMI – Ash Barty is tough to beat under any circumstances, especially when she’s on the ropes. The world’s top-ranked player has reached the Miami Open quarterfinals, getting there by holding off 14th-seeded Victoria Azarenka of Belarus 6-1, 1-6, 6-2. This, too, was cool: The match lived up to its showdown potential, with the reigning Miami Open champion and current world No. 1 in Barty facing someone who has won the Miami title three times and a previous world No. Svitolina will play unseeded Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia in the quarters; Sevastova was a 6-1, 7-5 winner over wild-card Ana Konjuh of Croatia.
Tsitsipas, with Big Three missing, makes 4th round in Miami
Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece returns to Damir Dzumhur of Bosnia during the Miami Open tennis tournament, Saturday, March 27, 2021, in Miami Gardens, Fla. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier)MIAMI – For tennis up-and-comers like Stefanos Tsitsipas, the draw at the Miami Open began to look a lot less daunting even before the tournament began. “It’s a first test to see how it is playing without them,” Tsitsipas said after his third-round victory Saturday. 2-seeded Tsitsipas is among those with the best chance to take advantage, and he looked the part against Damir Dzumhur, winning 6-1, 6-4. “I created a lot of opportunities with my serve — I wasn’t rushing at all, finding the right angles and executing it perfectly,” Tsitsipas said. In women's play, top-ranked Ash Barty and three-time champion Victoria Azarenka advanced to a round of 16 showdown.
Daughter of Bills, Sabres owners into all-US QF in Australia
United States' Jessica Pegula celebrates after defeating Ukraine's Elina Svitolina in their fourth round match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, Feb. 15, 2021. “I’m just happy I’m here; she's been playing some good tennis, solidifying herself as a top player.”AdThe 61st-ranked Pegula beat No. “A lot of people were complaining, and I told myself I wasn’t going to complain,” Brady said. Also on that half of the draw, Rafael Nadal moved closer to a men's-record 21st Grand Slam trophy by overwhelming No. “I’m super excited for her making her first Grand Slam quarterfinal.
Australian Open's hard quarantine 'took a toll' on players
When Tennys Sandgren resumed practicing after his can’t-go-anywhere hard quarantine ended, the American said Tuesday, his hands developed blisters from holding a racket. And, like Azarenka, both Sandgren and Pospisil lost their opening matches. “I wouldn’t say the whole tournament is a joke, but for some players, it’s not feasible. “I needed fresh air or maybe a bigger room or better conditions to play against the best players,” she said. Players in the “regular” quarantine were allowed to leave their rooms for five hours per day during the first two weeks after getting to Australia.
Nadal, Barty advance in straight sets at Australia Open
Spain's Rafael Nadal reacts during his first round match against Serbia's Laslo Djere at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021. Daniil Medvedev extended his winning streak to 15 matches with a 6-2, 6-2, 6-4 win over Vasek Pospisil and seventh-seeded Andrey Rublev beat Yannick Hanfmann 6-3, 6-3, 6-4. 9 Matteo Berrettini defeated Kevin Anderson, a two-time finalist at majors, 7-6 (9), 7-5, 6-3. Barty lost to Sofia Kenin in the Australian Open semifinals last year and then skipped the U.S. Open and her title defense at the French Open because she stayed in Australia during the COVID-19 pandemic. AdTwo-time Australian Open quarterfinalist Tennys Sandgren also went through the hard lockdown.
Serena Williams, Osaka drawn in same half at Australian Open
3 Naomi Osaka, the U.S. Open champion. Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka, Johanna Konta and Elina Svitolina are also in Kenin's quarter. Williams already has won seven Australian Open titles and her 23 major titles is a record in the Open era. In the top half, Djokovic’s bid for a third consecutive Australian title — and ninth overall — could get tricky. Djokovic and Zverev were playing against each other in an ATP Cup doubles match when the draw was made for the Australian Open.
With quarantines almost over, tennis set to start Down Under
It was a controversial start to the government-mandated quarantine ahead of the Australian Open beginning Feb. 8, 2021. The government-mandated quarantine ahead of the Feb. 8-21 Australian Open had a controversial start. There was some considerable doubt during that second wave whether the Australian Open would even be remotely possible in Melbourne. Players, coaches and officials were flown in on 17 jets chartered by Tennis Australia and met by biosecurity officials and placed immediately into hotel quarantine. They include 2019 U.S. Open champion Bianca Andreescu, whose coach was among those who tested positive, and two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka.
3 more COVID-19 cases linked to Australian Open arrivals
Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley defended Djokovic for appealing to Australian Open organizers to ease restrictions so players could move to private residences with tennis courts. (Morgan Sette/AAP Image via AP)Two players are among the three latest COVID-19 cases that have emerged from testing conducted on passengers who arrived on charter flights bringing people to Melbourne for the Australian Open. More than 1,200 players, coaches, staff, officials and media arrived on flights in a 36-hour period until Saturday morning to prepare for the Australian Open, which starts Feb. 8. Victoria state Premier Daniel Andrews said some of the cases linked to the tournament will be reclassified as “non-infectious shedding." The most heartening thing at the end in the chat there was a scroll of thank yous from all the stars and players," Tiley said, according to AAP.