Monday, July 5, 2021

Sabalenka, Tomljanovic reach first major quarterfinals

No. 2 seed Aryna Sabalenka, the runner-up in San Jose, Calif., in 2019, defeated
No. 18 seed and recent French Open quarterfinalist Elena Rybakina 6-3, 4-6, 6-3
today at Wimbledon. 2019 photo by Mal Taam
   Two men and three women reached their first Grand Slam quarterfinals today at Wimbledon. Two of the women, Aryna Sabalenka and Ajla Tomljanovic, have starred in Northern California.
   No. 16 seed Felix Auger-Aliassime, a 20-year-old Canadian, and unseeded Marton Fucsovics of Hungary ousted high seeds with five-set victories. 
   Auger-Aliassime outlasted No. 4 seed Alexander Zverev of Germany 6-4, 7-6 (6), 3-6, 3-6, 6-4 in 4 hours, 2 minutes. Fucsovics downed No. 5 seed Andrey Rublev of Russia 6-3, 4-6, 4-6, 6-0, 6-3. Rublev, 23, was seeking his fourth quarterfinal in his last five Grand Slam tournaments.
   Breaking through on the women's side were No. 2 seed Sabalenka of Belarus and unseeded Tomljanovic (pronounced Tom-yon-o-vich) of Australia and Viktorija Golubic of Switzerland.
   Sabalenka, the runner-up in the 2019 Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic in San Jose, Calif., eliminated No. 18 seed and recent French Open quarterfinalist Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan 6-3, 4-6, 6-3.
   Tomljanovic, a finalist in the 2017 Sacramento (Calif.) Challenger, defeated 18-year-old wild card Emma Raducanu of Great Britain 6-4, 3-0, retired (difficulty breathing). Golubic beat No. 23 seed Madison Keys, who won the last Bank of the West Classic at Stanford in 2017, 7-6 (3), 6-3.
   The last two French Open women's champions, Iga Swiatek (2020) and Barbora Krejcikova, lost.
   No. 21 seed Ons Jabeur of Tunisia overcame No. 7 seed Swiatek 5-7, 6-1, 6-1 to become the first Arab woman to reach the Wimbledon quarterfinals. It was Jabeur's third consecutive victory over a Grand Slam champion (also Venus Williams and GarbiƱe Muguruza).
   Top seed Ashleigh Barty, the 2019 French Open champion, defeated Krejcikova, who also won the doubles crown at Roland Garros last month, 7-5, 6-3. 
   No. 25 seed Angelique Kerber, the 2015 Bank of the West champion, beat No. 20 seed Coco Gauff, 17, of Delray Beach, Fla., 6-4, 6-4 to reach her first Grand Slam quarterfinal since winning Wimbledon in 2018. Kerber, who captured the inaugural Bad Homburg Open on home soil in Germany two weeks ago, extended her winning streak to nine matches.
   On the men's side, top seed Novak Djokovic and No. 6 seed Roger Federer, who will turn 40 next month, advanced in straight sets. No. 2 seed Daniil Medvedev of Russia leads No. 14 seed Hubert Hurkacz of Poland 6-2, 6-7 (2), 6-3, 3-4. 
   No American men or women reached the singles quarterfinals.
  Advancing to the doubles quarterfinals were No. 5 seeds Shuko Aoyama and Ena Shibahara (San Francisco Bay Area native) of Japan in the women's draw and No. 6 seeds Rajeev Ram (volunteer assistant coach at the University of California, Berkeley) of Carmel, Ind., and Joe Salisbury of Great Britain, No. 14 seeds Raven Klaasen of South Africa and Ben McLachlan (Cal, 2011-14) of Japan and unseeded Andre Goransson (Cal, 2014-17) of Sweden and Casper Ruud of Norway in the men's draw.
   Klaasen and McLachlan, who was born and raised in New Zealand but represents his mother's native country, edged Jeremy Chardy and Fabrice Martin of France 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (5), 7-5 in 4 hours, 12 minutes. Goransson is playing in his first Grand Slam tournament.
   In the second round of mixed doubles, Arthur Fery, who recently completed his freshman year at Stanford, and Tara Moore of Great Britain lead No. 12 seeds Martin and Alexa Guarachi of Chile 6-3, 5-3.
   In the first round of girls singles, No. 7 seed Alexandra Yepifanova, an incoming Stanford freshman from Lake Worth, Fla., beat Alina Shcherbinina of Russia 7-6 (3), 6-2.
   On the boys side, Matthew William Donald of the Czech Republic topped Aidan Mayo of Roseville in the Sacramento area 7-6 (5), 6-7 (5), 6-4, and Adolfo Daniel Vallejo of Paraguay leads Ethan Quinn of Fresno, Calif., 2-1. 

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