In a fourth-round showdown No.22 seed Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan upset World No.1 Iga Swiatek of Poland to make her first Australian Open quarterfinal here at Rod Laver Arena on Sunday.
Rybakina produced a sublime game, defeating World No. 1 Swiatek 6-4, 6-4 in a match which lasted for an hour and a half to make her first Australian Open quarterfinal. With an early 2-0 lead, Rybakina demonstrated no qualms about attacking Swiatek’s second serve. However, Swiatek was equally as impressive, scoring second-return points to get back to 2-2.
From that point forward, the Kazakh was untouchable on serve, closing the opening frame with four aces as she stole the one-set advantage. Rybakina then broke Swiatek once more for 4-3. In the opening set, Rybakina won 79 per cent of her first-service points, outperforming Swiatek’s 63 per cent success rate.
Rybakina rallied to win six of the next seven games after going behind 3-0 in the second set to complete the shock. She had 11 winners and nine unforced errors in the second set, while Swiatek had six victories and eight unforced errors.
Elsewhere, No.17 seed Jelena Ostapenko moved through to the quarterfinals of the Australian Open for the first time in her career with a 7-5, 6-3 win over No.7 seed Coco Gauff at Melbourne Park on Sunday.
The Latvian in her career head-to-head record against Gauff to 1-1 with a 93-minute victory in Margaret Court Arena while playing in her maiden Round 4 at the Australian Open. She recorded 30 wins, held off seven of the eight break points she faced, and went a flawless 3-for-3 when she had opportunities to attack Gauff’s serve.