By Richard Pagliaro | @Tennis_Now | Saturday, January 20, 2024
Armed with an abbreviated service movement, Iga Swiatek suffered disarming defeat in MelbouNorne.
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In her maiden main third-round look, 19-year-old Czech Linda Noskova shocked Swiatek 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 in an Australian Open stunner.
The Czech teen snapped Swiatek’s 18-match successful streak and shattered the highest seed’s 2024 AO dream.
A daring Noskova cracked 35 winners, together with 10 aces, stamping the largest win of her younger profession to enhance to 7-1 on the season.
Awash in emotion afterward, Noskova sat in her court-side seat, pressed her face in her towel and shed tears of pleasure.
“I’m speechless, I knew it was going to be an amazing match with the world No. 1 and such a player, but I didn’t really think it would end up like this,” stated Noskova, who suffered a crushing 6-1, 6-4 loss to Swiatek of their lone prior assembly in Warsaw final season. ““The match was obviously really, really tough…
“I believe from the primary time that I noticed I used to be going to play her I used to be simply eager about this match for 2 days in a row. I used to be simply attempting to arrange myself mentally, I’m simply actually glad to get by means of this spherical.”
The top-seeded Swiatek, who rallied from 1-4 down in the final set to defeat 2022 AO finalist Danielle Collins in a spirited second-round comeback, attributed the upset to two main reasons.
Swiatek said she lacked her typical sharp instinct reading the game and credited Noskova for playing proactive tennis on pivotal points.
“I felt like I had the whole lot underneath management till she broke me within the second set,” Swiatek said. “But, yeah, properly, I had couple of probabilities to interrupt her in second set and I did not use them. So that is a disgrace.
“But when she broke me, she was kind of proactive. I wanted to do that as well later in the next games. Sometimes, yeah, I was rushing it. I just wasn’t playing kind of with my intuition and naturally. I guess I’ll have to work on stuff to feel more comfortable next year.”
And then there have been three.
Swiatek’s gorgeous ouster means solely three Top 10 seeds reached the spherical of 16 within the girls’s discipline.
No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka carries a shedding report in opposition to her fourth-round opponent Amanda Anisimova.
US Open champion and No. 4-seeded Coco Gauff goals to increase her Slam successful streak to 11 matches when she faces the lone Pole nonetheless standing, 69th-ranked Magdalena Frech, within the fourth spherical.
No. 9-seeded two-time defending AO doubles champion Barbora Krejcikova will attempt to halt the impressed run of 16-year-old sensation Mirra Andreeva within the fourth spherical. Devoted followers will recall Andreeva upset former French Open singles and doubles champion Krejcikova within the Wimbledon second spherical final summer season.
The 2022 AO semifinalist suffered her earliest Melbourne exit since a second-round loss in her 2019 debut.
Asked why she’s struggled a bit at Melbourne Park, the 2022 US Open champion stated “Well, the surface is quicker. That’s all I’d say.”
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Modifying her serve movement from a full conventional backswing to an abbreviated takeback, Swiatek battled, however dropped serve within the seventh recreation of the decider. Noskova gained eight of her final 11 service factors to shut in two hours, 20 minutes and arrange a fourth-round vs. Nineteenth-seeded Elina Svitolina, who knocked Swiatek out of Wimbledon final summer season.
The winner of the Noskova vs. Svitolina match will play both two-time former AO champion Victoria Azareka or Ukrainian qualifer Dayana Yastremska for a semifinal spot.
Photo credit score: Andy Cheung/Getty