Gauff Edges Raducanu In First Meeting At Australian Open; Garcia v Fernandez
In a battle of two of the biggest stars of this new generation of players, Coco Gauff eliminated Emma Raducanu 6-4, 7-6(4) to advance to the third round.
Raducanu couldn’t convert chances in the first finishing 1 of 7 on break points. But Raducanu rallied from 4-2 down in the second to make it interesting and later would hold two set points with Gauff serving 4-5.
“I think it was a tough match for me,” Gauff said. “The conditions, were a lot different from my first-round match, playing 11:00 in the day with the roof open to playing at night in heavy conditions.
“It was really tough to kind of fight,” she added. “In a lot of those points I was just trying to hang in there. For the most part I think I did well today. There’s no way you can go through a whole tournament playing every match perfect, so I think it’s all about being resilient when you need to.”
Gauff ran her mark to 7-0 and 14-0 in sets in 2023. That after finishing 2022 having lost her last five matches. Gauff has won six of her last seven matches in Grand Slam play, and her win last night was her 100th of her career.
Raducanu, who limped into the event with an ankle injury, put up a solid fight as she was seeking her first career Top 10 win.
“She is a great mover, great athlete,” Raducanu said. “Puts another ball in play, so you feel like you have to squeeze it closer to the line and then she kind of teases errors out of you that way.”
The two combined for 83 unforced errors.
2023 runner-up Danielle Collins survived another tough 3-setter this time going the distance 6-7(1), 6-2, 7-6[10-] to defeat 2021 semifinalist Karolina Muchova.
Earlier, Jessica Pegula held off a late-push from Aliaksandra Sasnovich to prevail 6-2, 7-6(5), World No. 1 Iga Swiatek opened play on Rod Laver and eased past Maria Osorio 6-2, 6-3.
Maria Sakkari overcame Diana Schnaider in three sets and in a mild upset, Spanish qualifier Cristina Bucsa saved a match point to defeat former US Open champion Bianca Andreescu 2-6, 7-6(7), 6-4.
Lone former champion Victoria Azarenka, Wimbledon winner Elena Rybakina, Barbora Krejcikova and Madison Keys also were winners.
The No. 8 seed Daria Kasatkina became the first Top 10 women’s seed out after getting eliminated by Varvara Gracheva in the first round.
Today, Aryna Sabalenka meets Shelby Rogers, Caroline Garcia faces Leylah Fernandez and Ons Jabeur meets Marketa Vondrousova.
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