Day 3 of the Aegon Classic Birmingham started with Aussie Daria Gavrilova who eked past Katerina Siniakova 7-5, 2-6, 6-4.
It was obvious Gavrilova had an aggressive game plan coming into this match but she just could not get the ball into the court, as the forehand and serve failed her, especially the latter as the Aussie hit six double faults in three service games! Gavrilova wasn’t playing her best tennis to claim the first set – Siniakova definitely wasn’t either as she started to get frustrated. Frustrated Siniakova = missing Siniakova as Gavrilova took the next five of six games. Siniakova’s aggressive gameplay shone through in the second but it just wasn’t enough to dismantle the World No.21 who stood firm at the baseline.
Petra Kvitova was absolutely stunning as Peak Petra blasted 25 winners to just 11 unforced errors. Broady played a decent match but it wasn’t enough to outhit the 2-time Wimbledon champion. Not surprised if Kvitova wins this whole thing, she could even be a dark horse for Wimbledon!
Ashleigh Barty is into another quarterfinal, this time beating Barbora Strycova 6-3, 3-6, 6-1. Watched the first set and Strycova was up to her antics again, shouting and screaming and stabbing racquets onto the grass all over the court. Strycova settled down in the second but it was too little too late, a bunch of errors in the decider ending her Birmingham campaign.
The last quarterfinalist of the day was Lucie Safarova – she produced an effective serving display, winning 91% of first serve points and didn’t have to save a break point all day long. She beat Naomi Osaka, who was still trying to get adapted to the grass, 6-2 6-4. The first serves of both players especially on this surface were lethal – I expect them coming into Wimbledon as dark horses!
In Mallorca, Victoria Azarenka saved three match points to defeat Risa Ozaki 6-3 4-6 7-6(7). I felt very bad for Ozaki as she was serving for the match at 5-4 before play was suspended… they should have at least let her finish that game! But anyway Vika was clutch and there were glimpses of Vintage Victoria in that match. She faces Ana Konjuh for a spot in the quarterfinals.
The top seed is out as Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova fell to Julia Goerges 1-6, 2-6. Goerges can blow hot and cold really quickly but in this encounter she was just on fire!
First tournament of the year, first quarterfinal of the year. That’s what happened to Sabine Lisicki as she won 85% of first serve points to beat Shelby Rogers in straight sets. She was very happy indeed!
Catherine Bellis and Kristyna Pliskova will face off for a spot in the Mallorca semifinals as they edged past Mona Barthel and Francesca Schiavone.
Linked below are the OOPs for Day 4.