Top-seed Ashleigh Barty set for semis at Miami Open
InternationalSports Mar 31, 2021 Sara Poraria
(REUTERS) – The top-seeded 24-year-old Australian player Ashleigh Barty beat seventh-seeded Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-3.
The match on Tuesday marked the first time Barty has played a top-10-ranked opponent in over a year.
Barty is set to face the fifth-seeded Elina Svitolina of Ukraine in the semifinals, who defeated Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia 6-3, 6-2.
Barty was pushed to three sets for the third time in four matches at the Miami Open but succeeded again to reach the semifinals.
The Australian player won the last Miami Open in 2019, but last year’s Open was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Barty has won 10 consecutive matches at the Miami Open.
Her match against Sabalenka lasted almost 2.5 hours. Barty only got two service breaks of the match, to take a 6-4 lead in the first set and a 5-3 lead in the third.
Sabalenka had seven break-point chances in total but could not covert any of them. Barty went 2-for-4 on break-point chances. Sabalenka also appeared to take on an injury in the middle of the third set before dropping the final three games.
“It was a brilliant match today,” Barty said post-match. “It was certainly the best level I’ve played for a long time and especially over a sustained period.”
Barty’s upcoming opponent, Svitolina, enters the semi-final with a 4-1 career record against Barty, although Barty won their latest matchup at the 2019 WTA Finals 6-4, 6-3.
The other quarterfinal matches secluded for Wednesday are between second-seed Naomi Osaka of Japan against 23-seeded Mari Sakkari of Greece and eight-seeded Bianca Andreescu of Canada against Sara Sorribes Tormo of Spain.
The Barty-Svitolina semi-final is set to take place tomorrow on Thursday, April 1.