Japanese teen Osaka vanquishes Venus
Japanese teenager Naomi Osaka fought back from an early break to stun Venus Williams in straight sets and move through to the Hong Kong Open quarter-finals yesterday.
Osaka, who prevailed 7-5, 6-2 for her best career win by ranking, double-faulted early in the opening set to hand seven-time Grand Slam champion Williams the advantage.
The 19-year-old broke back and levelled at 5-5 as the world No. 5 looked to serve for a 1-0 lead. Osaka then pounced on Williams' serve to break again and took the first set.
"I feel like even if I hit one semi-short ball, she would come in and crush it, so I had to play really well," Osaka said after the match.
Ranked world No. 64, Osaka began to dictate terms in the second set, racing to a 5-0 lead. Williams held her serve to avoid the humiliation of a bagel and broke Osaka to make it 5-2.
A double fault by the 37-year-old handed Osaka two match-points and the youngster took the first in style to gain revenge for her loss to the American in the third round of Wimbledon.
In the quarter-finals, Osaka will meet Russia's Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, who had beaten Jacqueline Cako 7-6(7/3), 6-1.
Williams has already qualified for the WTA Finals in Singapore from Oct 22 to 29, along with Garbine Muguruza, Simona Halep, Karolina Pliskova, Elina Svitolina, Caroline Wozniacki and Jelena Ostapenko.
In Shanghai, Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer both advanced into the third round of the Rolex Masters last night.
Nadal crushed American Jared Donaldson 6-2, 6-1, while Federer defeated Argentina's Diego Schwartzman 7-6(7/4), 6-4. - WIRE SERVICES