Anna Kournikova’s countrywoman, Maria Sharapova, has defeated Lucie Safarova of Czech Republic in the second round of Porsche Tennis Grand Prix 2013. Sharapova won the match in three sets by 6-4, 6-7(3), 6-3.
This was a nail biting encounter, but, at the end, Sharapova’s experience and class proved to be too much for the Czech player. With this win, Sharapova made her way into the final 8.
This was Sharapova’s first win over Safarova on clay courts. Before this, these two players had met on clay court three years back and in that match, Sharapova was defeated.
In the post match interview, Sharapova said, “It was never going to be an easy match. I was playing against a player who always plays well on clay courts. So, I knew that I would be tested and the same happened. Thankfully, I managed to get through somehow.”
“I played poorly in some parts of the match; no doubt about that. I should have finished the match in the second set, but, I couldn’t. So, there is surely some work for me to do.”
In the first set, both the players got one breakthrough each in the first 8 games and the scores were equalized at 4-4 at the end of the 8th game.
Sharapova got another breakthrough in the 9th game to get ahead by 5-4 and then, with a serve hold in the 10th game, she finished the set off.
In the second set, both the players broke each other twice in the first 12 games and the set went into the tie breaker. Safarova stunned the Russian player with her improvisation in the tie breaker.
Sharapova lost the tie breaker and the match got extended into the third set.
In the final set, Sharapova was at her peak. Some fantastic forehand shots came off her racket and her opponent had no clue whatsoever about how to tackle that onslaught.
Sharapova got a breakthrough in the 6th game to take a 4-2 lead. She calmly held her remaining serve after that and walked away with a tight win.
In the quarter final, Sharapova will face Ana Ivanovic of Serbia.