May 25th, 2024

Top-seeded Pegula advances to Charleston Open quarterfinals. Defending champion Jabeur ousted

By The Associated Press on April 4, 2024.

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) – Top-seeded Jessica Pegula advanced to the quarterfinals of the Charleston Open and Danielle Collins eliminated defending champion Ons Jabeur on Thursday.

Pegula, who reached the semifinals last year, had little trouble beating Magda Linette 6-2, 6-2. Pegula will face either No. 12-seeded Victoria Azarenka or Taylor Townsend for a spot in the last four at the clay-court tournament.

“I think I served really smart and I was playing well in these conditions, which were really tricky,” Pegula said. “And luckily, I was able to play the controlled, aggressive mentality in the wind and I was kind of able to pressure her.”

Jabeur, ranked sixth in the world, continued her struggles this year in losing her opening match for a fourth consecutive tournament. Jabeur is 2-6 this season after the 6-3, 1-6, 6-3 loss to Collins.

Collins lost her first set in Miami last month before winning the next 16 on the way to the championship. She’s continued her stellar play in Charleston, although she will have to play again Thursday night against Sloane Stephens to make the quarterfinals.

The tournament faced a six-hour rain delay Wednesday with several second-round matches getting pushed to early Thursday.

Collins said Jabeur is a tricky player with several slices and shots that force an opponent to stay mentally ready.

“I have a little bit of experience with that, so I definitely knew how to handle it, and handled it the best as I could,” Collins said. “Then just stayed mentally resilient.”

Jabeur said she ran into a player on a big-time roll.

“It’s tough to play players that have confidence and Danielle is playing really good,” Jabeur said.

Stephens, the 2016 champion here, topped No. 14-seeded Leylah Fernandez 6-4, 6-4.

Other early winners include seventh-seeded Elina Svitolina, who beat Daria Saville 6-2, 6-4, and 11th-seeded Elise Mertens, who defeated Varvara Gracheva 6-4, 3-6, 6-2.

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AP tennis: https://apnews.com/hub/tennis

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