Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Falling seeds

MELBOURNE, Australia (AFP) — Caroline Garcia became the latest top-10 seed to fall at the Australian Open with a shock defeat to Magda Linette, but Aryna Sabalenka blasted her way into the quarterfinals on Monday.

This is the first Grand Slam since the Open era began in 1968 to lose the top two seeds in both the men’s and women’s draws before the Last Eight.

There has been a series of surprise results at Melbourne Park, and unseeded Pole Linette got in on the action with a 7-6 (7/3), 6-4 victory over France’s fourth-seeded Garcia.

The 45th-ranked Linette faces Karolina Pliskova next after the former world No. 1 romped past China’s Zhang Shuai 6-0, 6-4.

Linette gave a sizable contingent of red-and-white-clad Polish fans at Rod Laver Arena plenty to cheer for, just 24 hours after they saw countrywoman and top seed Iga Swiatek bundled out.

Linette, 30, was almost overcome after reaching her maiden Grand Slam quarterfinal in one hour and 57 minutes.

“I don’t really believe it,” she said.

“I still can’t believe it, I don’t know what happened.”

“I’m speechless, really. I don’t know what to say.”

Belarusian Sabalenka never really looked like she would follow Swiatek, Garcia and the rest out of the first major of the year.

Along with third-seeded American Jessica Pegula,

fifth-seed Sabalenka looks the woman to beat. Both are chasing a maiden major crown.

Sabalenka defeated dangerous 12th-seed Belinda Bencic 7-5, 6-2 to set up a last-eight clash against unseeded Donna Vekic, who beat 17-year-old Linda Fruhvirtova in three sets.

Hard-hitting Sabalenka sprinted into her first quarterfinal at the Australian Open and said: “My whole life, it took me a little while to understand that negative emotion is not gonna help you on court.”

“You have to just stay strong and believe no matter what and then do everything you can.”

Later on Monday, Novak Djokovic will have to defy his troublesome hamstring and the home crowd when he plays Alex de Minaur for a place in the quarter-finals.

Djokovic would normally be a hot favourite at Melbourne Park, where the former world No. 1 is chasing a record-extending 10th Australian Open crown and 22nd major title.

But the 35-year-old Serbian has been struggling badly with a left hamstring injury ever since he arrived at the tournament.

He had heavy strapping on his thigh and required medical treatment in his three-set third-round victory over 27th seed Grigor Dimitrov.

Djokovic will also need to deal with what is bound to be a partisan home crowd at the 15,000-capacity Rod Laver Arena.

There is also fear of the unknown — Djokovic and 22nd-seeded De Minaur have never played each other before.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like


Manny Pacquiao knows his time is up. This was the keen observation made by a longtime member of his training team who spent dinner...


The dynamic duo of Johnmar “OhMyV33nus” Villaluna and Danerie James “Wise” del Rosario is back with a bang after leading Blacklist International to a...


The University Athletic Association of the Philippines will have a full calendar of sports events for Season 85 starting 1 October. UAAP President Fr....


ECHO has revealed its roster for the upcoming M4 Mobile Legends World Championship to be held 1-15 January 2023 in Jakarta, Indonesia. The seven...


It’s going to be business as usual as the Philippine Basketball Association will not stop its on-court activities when it gives way for the...


It doesn’t look as if newly-crowned Melvin Jerusalem will get the luxury of defending his minimumweight crown against a handpicked rival after the World...


Mitchell, meanwhile, is a six-foot shooting guard frowm Hartford University.


Legendary boxing referee Carlos ‘Sonny’ Padilla was recently inducted into the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame. Famous for serving as the third man in...