Elise Mertens, the triumphant departures of Elena Rybakina in San José


Number one seed Elise Mertens qualified for the quarterfinals of the Silicon Valley Classic on Thursday. The Belgian won her first round match against France’s Kristina Mladenovic 6-2, 4-6, 6-4 in two hours and 40 minutes. Mertens hit 38 winners throughout the game.

After the game, speaking with the media about the game, Mertens added: “It was a very physical game. I didn’t really find my rhythm today … sometimes it doesn’t come easily. I think in the second set she started to feel the ball a bit better with fewer mistakes.

It’s just important to win the last ball and keep fighting like I did today. I’m just glad I made it through this one. For a place in the semi-finals, Mertens will now face Yulia Putintseva. The eighth-seeded Kazakh won a comeback victory over Ajla Tomljanovic.

After two hours and 31 minutes of play, Putintseva took a 3-6, 7-5, 6-3 victory over the Australian.

Silicon Valley Classic: Elena Rybakina finishes strong

Putintseva only lost his serve twice in the match and took 33 wins, 13 more than his opponent’s total of 20.

Speaking about his performance after his win, Putintseva said: “I just kept in mind that I had to stay there, be there at every point. In the first set, I didn’t start very well and felt like my ball was flying a bit.

I managed to stay closer to the ground and be a little more patient, use a little more angles, and I think that worked out well. In the third set, I felt good and I was able to raise my level a bit and that’s what gave me the advantage ”.

In the last eight, Putintseva was joined by her compatriot, Elena Rybakina. The tournament’s second seed also picked up a comeback victory over American Claire Liu. Rybakina needed an hour and 35 minutes to pull off a 2-6, 6-0, 6-2 victory.

Rybakina will face another American for a place in the Silicon Valley Classic semifinals in seventh seed Danielle Collins. Collins came back from a loss in his second round derby to Sloane Stephens in the final game of the day.

After two hours and 10 minutes of play, Collins won 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 to claim his seventh trotting victory, returning to his title at the Palermo Ladies Open a few weeks ago.


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