She is full of confidence, and it shows game after game. Frenchwoman Caroline Garcia, 17e world, qualified, Sunday, September 4, for her first quarter-final of the US Open by beating the American Alison Riske (29e) 6-4, 6-1.
At 28, the French number one who had never passed the third round of the New York Major, thus equals her best result in a Grand Slam tournament, having played the quarter-finals at Roland-Garros in 2017.
“I’m so excited to be in the quarter, I’ve built up a lot of confidence since Cincinnati”pointed out Caroline Garcia in reference to her title at the WTA 1000 just before the start of the US Open.
The French had never beaten Alison Riske in three confrontations. But for a few weeks, Caroline Garcia has found tennis which has allowed her to climb up to 4e world rank in 2018, and she made short work of the American, in 1 hour 22, even if it took her a set to completely break free. It was on a winning comeback that she completed the first set by achieving the only break of the set.
The lock had jumped and the Lyonnaise then clearly dominated the debates, even if it took her five match points to conclude, after saving three break points for the American.
“Alison is a very tough player, a fighter, she moves a lot. I had to be very aggressive. The first set was tight, it was not great tennis, I had to manage my emotions. The second run was very good”she analyzed after performing her usual victory celebration, arms outstretched like an airplane flying over the Louis Armstrong court.
She will try to do even better on Tuesday against the American Coco Gauff (12e), finalist of the last Roland-Garros, to assert herself as a serious contender for the final coronation.
The Lyonnaise will be the only French representative in the quarter-finals, since shortly before qualifying, Corentin Moutet (drafted from qualifying) had fallen against the Norwegian Casper Ruud (5e) 6-1, 6-2, 6-7 (4/7), 6-2.
Very nervous and a little lost in the immensity of Arthur Ashe, yet not yet filled with its 23,800 daily spectators, the 23-year-old Frenchman missed his appointment during the first two sets, committing a lot of unforced errors.
Frustration quickly won over him. It first manifested itself in a rather unusual way, when he did a series of push-ups, as if to punish himself – and perhaps re-motivate himself – after a lost point at the start of the second set. Less funny, he sent, in anger, two balls in quick succession into the stands, just before the loss of the round, logically receiving a penalty point, after having received a warning a little earlier for the same infraction.
There was better in the third set. Led 4-2, the French finally had a start, breaking and then pushing Ruud to the decisive game. A tie-break during which he regained consistency, also taking advantage of the feverishness of his opponent, author of a double fault on the set point.
Ruud then managed to regain control of the match by taking Moutet’s serve to lead 3-1, not without immediately having to erase two break points. An advantage that he knew how to keep solidly afterwards.
Ranked 112e before the New York Major, Corentin Moutet should gain thirty places. Insufficient to overcome the bitter taste of defeat. ” I can play better than that, I can be better and I have to be better if I want to win more games. So there’s a lot of work ahead.” did he declare.
His opponent, who reached the quarters for the first time at Flushing Meadows, will face the Italian Matteo Berrettini (14e), emerged victorious from a big showdown against the Spaniard Alejandro Davidovich Fokina (39e).
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