Venus Williams, Simona Halep suffer third-round defeats to crash out of US Open
Two-time champion Venus Williams and second seed Simona Halep suffered shock third-round defeat in the US Open and were knocked out of the tournament in a dramatic few minutes at Flushing Meadows.
Home favourite Venus lost her third-round encounter 6-0, 0-6, 7-6 (7-5) to Italy's Sara Errani, who will now face Mirjana Lucic-Baroni next after the Croatian qualifier beat Romania's Halep 7-6 (8-6), 6-2.
Having twice come back from being down a break in the third set, Venus had a chance to serve out the match, but Errani, who had not won more than three games in a set against the American in three previous meetings, showed great fighting spirit to force a tie-break, The BBC reported.
Ultimately Venus was undone by too many unforced errors, 52 in all, although with seeds tumbling all around her, Errani will like her chances of going far in the tournament.
Errani said that she has never heard the crowd that strong, and added that she was shaking. She said that it was unbelievably good.
Errani, who put her finger to her lips after her victory, as if to silence the crowd, also said that she thinks she will remember forever that moment, and added that she does not know why she did that. She said that she was not angry, and that it was the adrenaline in her body.
Lucic-Baroni reached the semi-finals at Wimbledon in 1999 but had not reached the fourth round of a Grand Slam tournament since, as off-court problems derailed her career.
However, Lucic-Baroni returned to the Grand Slam stage in 2010 after a gap of eight years and beat future Wimbledon champion Marion Bartoli at SW12 in 2012.
Currently, Czech Lucie Safarova leads the women's standings with 43. She followed her 2-hour 36-minutes second-round match with a 2-hour 52-minutes epic in round three, taking her total to 7-hours 12-minutes so far.
Elsewhere in the women's draw, Italy's 28th seed Roberta Vinci went down to Shuai Peng of China 6-4, 6-3, although ninth seed Jelena Jankovic did beat Sweden's Johanna Larsson 6-1, 6-0.
Serbia's Jelena Jankovic, seeded ninth, beat Swedish tennis ace Johanna Larsson 6-1, 6-0. The former world number one, who reached the US Open final in 2008 said that she feels hungry, adding that she wants to do well again.
Jankovic will now face Belinda Bencic, who ousted sixth seed Angelique Kerber, in the fourth round. The German said that she loves playing in the US Open, adding that she has had a lot of deep rounds here and it is her favourite Grand Slam.
(Posted on 30-08-2014)