September 1, 2014
Caroline Wozniacki produced one of the great moments of the US Open to beat Maria Sharpova 6-4, 2-6, 6-2. Rory who?
Novak Djokovic and his wonder-shot around the net-post against Diego Schwartzman still has to top the list of incredible points so far at this spectacular Slam. Yet for sheer defensive determination and athleticism – at such a key moment of the match against Maria too – Wozniacki’s magical moment was simply unbeatable and brought the New York crowd to their feet.
Three times Wozniacki had to scramble along the entire length of the baseline and stretch for seemingly impossible retrievals as Sharapova toyed with the battling Dane. That never-say-die attitude was finally rewarded when the heavy favourite sent her next shot into the net, as if unnerved by what she had seen.
The significance? It was break point and Wozniacki’s wizardry had earned her a 3-1 lead in the final set. This was the moment Caroline broke Sharapova’s legendary spirit and announced that her own strength of character remains undiminished by a dreadful twist in her personal life at the start of the summer when the star golfer Rory McIlroy announced their separation shortly before the date of their planned. We wondered how Wozniacki would cope with every woman’s worst nightmare.
Now we can be sure she is doing just fine, thanks.
Caroline confirmed: ‘This one was a great win for me. Maria is a good player. Mentally, to get that in my pocket is kind of nice.’
Wozniacki will now face the fiery Italian, Sara Errani, who defeated Mirjana Lucic-Baroni, 6-3, 2-6, 6-0. Does Caroline have the stamina to go all the way? She is already in training for November’s New York Marathon, so no problems there. Apparently Wozniacki can only go from strength to strength.
The same could be said of the Swiss 17-year-old Belinda Bencic, who beat ninth seed Jelena Jankovic 7-6 (8-6) 6-3 to reach the quarter-finals.
Meanwhile Belinda’s brightly-attired compatriot, Roger Federer continued to dazzle as he beat Marcel Granollers 4-6, 6-1, 6-1, 6-1. When the rain cleared it was Federer who shone, despite losing the first set a little carelessly. The masterful Swiss turned the rest of the match into something of an exhibition as he continued to roll back the years.
The shock of the day in the men’s singles came when Gilles Simon beat David Ferrer 6-3, 3-6, 6-1, 6-3.
But Sunday in America definitely belonged to Caroline Wozniacki. And now we can’t wait for the next instalment in her remarkable story.
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