News | WTA Tennis English

  • Posted: Jan 01, 1970

CHARLESTON, SC, USA – The unseeded Jelena Ostapenko put together a dominating performance to oust 2011 champion Caroline Wozniacki in straight sets and move into the Volvo Car Open semifinals.

At 19 years old and ranked No.66, Charleston-debutante Ostapenko was the youngest and lowest-ranked player left in the draw. But she backed up her results to reach the second Premier-level semifinal of her career with the 6-2, 6-4 victory.

It feels amazing to be in the semis here,” Ostapenko told press after the match. “First time I’m in Charleston, and today was a tough match because Caroline is such a great player.

“I just tried, and I think it was not bad.”

Ostapenko was dictating from the start against the former World No.1, fearlessly changing the direction of the ball and firing off winners from every angle. After an edgy few opening games as both players acclimated to the tricky, windy conditions, it was the Latvian who kicked into gear, breaking three times to reel off six games in a row and snatch up the opening set and start the second with a break to the good.

Wozniacki earned the break straight back with some rock-solid returning, but found herself down again a couple of games later as Ostapenko outpaced her to bring up a 3-2 lead. Wozniacki saved three match points as the teenager served for the match – she was even a point away from making it 5-5 – but Ostapenko wouldn’t be denied. She kept up the pressure and broke through Wozniacki’s defense, booking her spot into the Charleston semifinals after an hour and twenty-six minutes.

I just knew before the match that I have to stay aggressive all the time and still be consistent,” Ostapenko explained. “And I tried not to step back, just to be like play in the court all the shots.And I think that’s helped me today.”

Despite winning just 51% of her first serve points, the Latvian backed it up by firing 40 winners against Wozniacki’s 14, outweighing her 26 unforced errors to Wozniacki’s six. And the Dane will surely rue her missed opportunities – she only converted one of the five break chances she created, while Ostapenko converted four of eight.

I really tried my best out there,” Wozniacki reflected in post-match press. “I was trying to grind everything down. I tried to change the pace when I had the opportunity, but I mean if she played like this every day, then she would be No.1 in the world.

“She really played well. She went for her shots. Everything was going in. She was hitting the lines. Everything that could go her way today was going her way.

“All I could do today was try my best, try my hardest to fight and try and get somewhat of a grip on it, but you know, it is what it is sometimes.”

The loss also denies Wozniacki a return to the upper echelon of the WTA rankings – she needed to reach at least the Charleston semifinals to guarantee herself a spot inside the Top 10.

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