Facebook Social Button Twitter Social Button Follow Us on InstagramYouTube Social Button Follow Me on Pinterest
NewsVideosScoresTV ListingsTournamentsRankingsLucky Letcord PodcastMagazine

By Richard Pagliaro | Friday, October 7, 2022

Iga Swiatek

World No. 1 Iga Swiatek subdued Caty McNally 6-4, 6-4 for her ninth consecutive win and Barbora Krejcikova stopped Alycia Parks for her seventh straight win in Ostrava.

Photo credit: Getty

Grand Slam champions withstood stress tests from American qualifiers to stretch streaks in Ostrava.

In a rousing reunion match of former junior doubles partners, Iga Swiatek stopped Caty McNally 6-4, 6-4 posting her ninth consecutive victory to secure a spot in her 10th semifinal of the season.

More: Alcaraz, Nadal Make History

Contesting her first tournament since she beat Ons Jabeur to win the US Open last month, Swiatek raised her record to a WTA-best 57-7 on the season.

Though the scoreline is straightforward this match was both entertaining and dramatic at times.

The 151st-ranked McNally, the lowest-ranked quarterfinalist in tournament history, used her low slice backhand, flat forehand down the line and her strong net skills to pressure Swiatek from the outset.

The 21-year-old Swiatek saved a pair of break points to hold in the opening game. McNally erased a couple of break points in the second game.

Playing short angles and applying her slice backhand, McNally earned another break point in the third game.

McNally ran through six straight points threatening the US Open champion's serve in the fifth game. McNally fired a forehand winner down the line for break points and curled a crosscourt forehand to carve out the first break of the match for 3-2.

Despite the fact she's ranked 150 spots below Swiatek in the WTA rankings, McNally played like a woman who knew she belonged.

Dialing on her forehand, Swiatek was slugging heavy topspin drives to push McNally back behind the baseline. A diagonal forehand winner helped her earn triple set point. When McNally narrowly missed the mark on her own inside-out forehand, Swiatek snatched a one-set lead after 52 minutes.

Tennis Express

Both women served 81 percent in a quality opening set that saw Swiatek smack nine forehand winners.

The world No. 1 was 46-1 when winning the opening set this season.

Resetting, McNally hit a forehand winner down the line for triple break point to start the second set. Swiatek saved the first two break points and on the third McNally had a clear look at another inside-out forehand, but missed it wide. The top seed survived the stress test to hold from love-40 down.

Though McNally had some success playing her low slice backhand to Swiatek's forehand, the speedy Pole caught up to a drop shot and shoveled back a reply the American could not handle. Swiatek broke for a 2-0 second-set lead.

The three-time Grand Slam champion erased another break point digging through a demanding hold to consolidate for a 3-0 lead.

Knowing she needed to make a stand, McNally did exactly that. The American qualifier held in the fourth game then dipped a decisive running backhand pass that Swiatek could not handle to break back for 2-3.

Tuning out the overwhelmingly pro-Swiatek crowd, McNally fired an ace and flicked a forehand volley winner to level after six games.

Crushing her topspin forehand with menacing intent, Swiatek held at 30 for 5-4 then broke at love to close a one hour, 54-minute triumph.

Three-time Grand Slam champion Swiatek, who improved to 15-2 in WTA quarterfinals, will play either Czech wild card Tereza Martincova or world No. 21 Ekaterina Alexandrova for a spot in Sunday's final.

Fresh off her trek to the Tallinn title last weekend, Barbora Krejcikova continued her winning ways today.

The 2021 Roland Garros singles and doubles champion Krecjikova halted the inspired run of 144th-ranked American qualifier Alycia Parks 7-6(7), 6-3, for her seventh straight win.

On Thursday, Parks pounded 15 aces toppling seventh-ranked Greek Maria Sakkari 5-7, 7-5, 7-5 for her first career Top 10-win and first trip to a WTA quarterfinal.

Today, Krejcikova and Parks traded breaks to open the quarterfinal before the Czech found her groove on serve. Krejcikova stamped three consecutive love holds and won 16 of 17 points on serve during one stretch of the opening set she pulled out in a tight tiebreaker.

They exchanged breaks early in the second set. Krejcikova used her variety to disrupt Parks' rhythm breaking at love for a 4-2 lead. Krejcikova won 13 of the last 18 points securing her second straight semifinal spot.

Next up for Krejcikova is a Wimbledon winner Elena Rybakina in a clash of Grand Slam champions facing off for the first time.

Rybakina ripped 11 aces and saved the lone break point she faced fighting off two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova, 7-6(5), 6-4 in two hours.

"It was a really tough match and Petra played really well," Rybakina said in her on-court interview. "I think it was a great battle.

"The atmosphere was really nice. I know that most of the people were cheering for Petra, but overall I think it was a really great battle."


Latest News