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By Chris Oddo | @TheFanChild | Wednesday June 23, 2021


Comfortable on the grass, and playing well in general, Daria Kasatkina swept past Iga Swiatek for another big win on Wednesday at Eastbourne.

Photo Source: Getty

Russia’s Daria Kasatkina is starting to look like a threat to go deep at Wimbledon (buckle your grass-court seatbelts there are many such threats). The 24-year-old continued her solid run of tennis on Wednesday at Eastbourne by knocking off fourth-seeded Iga Swiatek to set a quarterfinal matchup with Jelena Ostapenko.

It was Kasatkina's first Top 10 win since Roland-Garros 2018, and her first ever on grass.

Tennis Express

Kasatkina, who won 12 of the final 13 games to win 4-6, 6-0, 6-1, has a crafty game for the grass, and she says that she has learned over the years that she doesn’t need to change much to make her game work on tennis’ most tricky surface.

"There was a stereotype that on grass the game is different and you have to change a lot and you have to play really aggressive," she said. "Maybe before it was like that because also the grass was faster - I don't know, I heard - but now you can play points on grass, you can play rallies, you can spin, you can kick, so at the end it's tennis everywhere, so that's what I learned in these past few years, when I was playing on grass, that there's nothing to be afraid of when you go on grass.

The Russian is 6-1 on grass in 2021 and 16-9 for her career. She reached the quarterfinals at Wimbledon in 2018.

She has come a long way on the surface from juniors, she says.

"I had no idea how to play, how to move, what to do on this surface," she said. "And I had no coach at the time who could explain to me, like what to do and how to move properly, so I was just suffering, I was like a cow on the grass, I didn't know how to play.

"But then when I came back as a professional with a coach and he explained me better what I have to do and how I have to play. I think it's getting better than it used to be in juniors."

Four of the five seeds in action went down on Wednesday at Eastbourne. In addition to Swiatek, No.2-seeded Elina Svitolina fell to Elena Rybakina 6-4, 7-6(3), No.3-seeded Bianca Andreescu lost to Anett Kontaveit, 6-3 6-3 and No.6-seeded Belinda Bencic dropped a 6-4 6-4 decision to Viktorija Golubic.

American Coco Gauff served for the quarterfinals but eventually fell to Anastasija Sevastova, 4-6, 7-5, 6-2, while Camila Giorgi took out American Shelby Rogers, 6-3, 4-6, 6-2.


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