Wednesday, July 28, 2021

Rybakina, entered in San Jose, reaches Olympic semis

   No. 15 seed Elena Rybakina, a Russia native who represents Kazakhstan, defeated No. 7 seed Garbine Muguruza of Spain 7-5, 6-1 today in Tokyo's brutal heat and humidity to reach the Olympic semifinals.
   Rybakina, who's entered in next week's Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic at San Jose State University, is scheduled to face No. 9 seed Belinda Bencic of Switzerland.
   Bencic defeated Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia 6-0, 3-6, 6-3. Pavlyuchenkova played for the Sacramento Capitals of World TeamTennis at 15 in 2006 and reached the French Open final last month.
   In the other Olympic semifinal, No. 4 seed Elina Svitolina of Ukraine is set to meet unseeded Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic.
   Svitolina, who advanced to the semifinals of the 2015 Bank of the West Classic at Stanford and stunned Serena Williams en route to the quarterfinals of the 2016 Olympics in Rio De Janeiro, beat Camila Giorgi of Italy 6-4, 6-4.
   Vondrousova eliminated unseeded Paula Badosa of Spain 6-3, 0-0, retired after ousting No. 2 seed Naomi Osaka of Japan on Tuesday. Badosa, who also is entered in San Jose, left the court in a wheelchair because of heatstroke. 
   Rybakina and Badosa reached their first Grand Slam quarterfinal in the recent French Open.
   In the Olympic men's draw, No. 14 seed Ugo Humbert of France surprised No. 3 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece 2-6, 7-6 (4), 6-2 to reach the quarterfinals. Tsitsipas, 22, advanced to his first major final in the French Open, falling to top-ranked Novak Djokovic after winning the first two sets.
   Djokovic, trying to become the first man to earn a singles Golden Slam (all four major titles and an Olympic gold medal in a calendar year), dominated Alejandro Davidovich Fokina of Spain 6-3, 6-1. 
   Meanwhile, top-seeded Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic of Croatia outplayed Ben McLachlan (University of California, Berkeley, 2011-14) and Kei Nishikori of Japan 6-3, 6-3 in the quarterfinals.
   In the first round of mixed doubles:
   —Laura Siegemund and Kevin Krawietz of Germany edged No. 3 seeds Bethanie Mattek-Sands and Rajeev Ram, a volunteer assistant coach at Cal, 6-4, 5-7 [10-8]. Ram and Venus Williams won the silver medal in mixed doubles in the 2016 Games.
   —Ena Shibahara, a San Francisco Bay Area native who plays for Japan, and McLachlan beat Yaroslava Shvedova and Andrey Golubev of Kazakhstan 6-3, 7-6 (3).
   ATP Tour — In the opening round of doubles in Atlanta, Alexei Popyrin and Matt Reid of Australia defeated Andre Goransson (University of California, Berkeley, 2014-17) of Sweden and Frederik Nielsen of Denmark 7-6 (4), 2-6 [11-9] in a matchup of unseeded teams.
   At Wimbledon in 2012, Nielsen and Great Britain's Jonathan Marray became the only wild cards in the tournament's 144-year history to capture the men's doubles title. Goran Ivanisevic (2001) is the only man to accomplish the feat in singles.
   Reid has won four Challenger doubles titles in Northern California, three with countryman John-Patrick Smith and one with compatriot Thanasi Kokkinakis.
   ATP Challenger Tour — Top-seeded Jenson Brooksby, 20, of Carmichael, Calif., in the Sacramento region defeated Ulises Blanch of Orlando, Fla., 6-7 (6), 6-5, retired to reach the quarterfinals of the $52,080 Lexington (Ky.) Challenger.
   Brooksby is coming off an appearance in the final of the Hall of Fame Open in Newport, R.I., two weeks ago in his first tournament ever on grass and first in the main draw on the ATP Tour.
   In the opening round of Lexington doubles, No. 3 seeds Christian Harrison of Bradenton, Fla., and Dennis Novikov of San Jose beat N Vijay Sundar Prashanth and Ramkumar Ramanathan of India 4-6, 6-3 [10-5]. Harrison and Novikov won the doubles crown in last week's $52,080 Cary (N.C.) Challenger.
   USTA Pro Circuit — Strong Kirchheimer of Cary outlasted qualifier William Griffith, a former Cal standout from Fresno, Calif., 3-6, 7-6 (5), 6-4 in the first round of the $25,000 Neitzel Family Open in Champaign, Ill.

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