Mirra Andreeva Shocks Aryna Sabalenka to Reach First Grand Slam Semifinal at Roland Garros 2024

Mirra andreeva, 17-year-old tennis prodigy secured the biggest victory of her burgeoning career by defeating world No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka with a score of 6-7 (5), 6-4, 6-4 in an electrifying performance at Roland Garros 2024.

This win marks Andreeva’s first Grand Slam semifinal appearance, disrupting Sabalenka’s impressive 23-set winning streak at major tournaments.

Mirra Andreeva Shocks Aryna Sabalenka to Reach First Grand Slam Semifinal at Roland Garros 2024
Andreeva, a 17-year-old, is going into her maiden Grand Slam semifinal match, taking on No. 12 seed Jasmine Paolini. © AFP or licensors

“I really tried not to focus on the score, and when it was the second match point for me, I was trying to imagine I was saving a break point, so I was trying to play brave and I managed to win!” When Andreeva was being interviewed in court, she exclaimed.

In two hours and 29 minutes on Court Philippe-Chatrier, Andreeva ended the reigning Australian Open champion’s 23-set winning streak at Grand Slams and her run of six consecutive Slam semifinals. She did this by rallying from a break down in the third set to hand an out-of-sorts Sabalenka her first major defeat of the season.

Jasmine Paolini, a No. 12 seed who made her Slam semifinal debut earlier in the day and shocked No. 4 seed Elena Rybakina, is waiting for Andreeva, the youngest semifinalist since Martina Hingis in 1997.

After defeating older sister Erika in straight sets in the opening round of her event, Sabalenka was up against her second Andreeva in as many weeks. Although Sabalenka has defeated Mirra Andreeva in back-to-back Mutua Madrid Opens—most recently last month with the loss of just five games—Mirra Andreeva is a more familiar opponent.

Andreeva has emerged as one of the most promising young players of the past 12 months. She was pushed to the brink of success by Sabalenka during her fourth-round finish at the Caja Magica last spring, and she has only gotten better since. She hired Conchita Martinez as her coach, who guided Garbiñe Muguruza to a 2017 Wimbledon victory, and has advanced to the second round in three of her last four major tournaments.

With just one set lost en way to the quarterfinals against the former world No. 1 Victoria Azarenka, Paris proved to be a new high point for the teenager. Despite defeating home favorite Varvara Gracheva, she enchanted the French audience and was well-received in the opening moments of her third meeting with Sabalenka.

In addition to finishing in second place in Madrid and the Internazionali BNL d’Italia, Sabalenka had an outstanding first week on the terre battue, extending her Grand Slam winning streak to 11 matches without dropping a set. She played well against close friend Paula Badosa and overcame a setback at the BNP Paribas Open to defeat Emma Navarro, advancing to her ninth consecutive Grand Slam quarterfinal despite a back problem she disclosed she had picked up in Rome.

She entered the match with Andreeva having defeated her opponent 8-0 in major quarterfinals (16-0 in sets). She attempted to start the match similarly, breaking to take a 2-0 lead. However, things quickly took a worrying turn when she twice gave the break back due to double faults, losing five of the following six games.

Also Read: Novak Djokovic Withdraws from 2024 Roland Garros Due to Knee Injury; Jannik Sinner Claims ATP World No. 1 Spot

Mirra Andreeva Shocks Aryna Sabalenka to Reach First Grand Slam Semifinal at Roland Garros 2024
Throughout the game, Sabalenka seemed to be having stomach problems, necessitating several medical timeouts to deal with the problem. © Getty Images

The 26-year-old took the first of two medical timeouts due to what appeared to be a stomach ailment after falling behind on her own break. She took medication to try to alleviate the ache. She was on the verge of dropping her first Grand Slam set of the year until she won three straight games and ultimately prevailed in a tight tiebreaker that took little more than an hour.

After surrendering the early break advantage and going behind 2-4 with Andreeva closing in for a decider, Sabalenka appeared to have overcome her troubles early in the second set. However, she quickly looked physically exhausted once more.

Sabalenka ended a 23-match winning streak by missing a backhand into the net after saving one set point with a powerful forehand.

There were sudden bursts of energy as the championship set got going. Sabalenka broke Andreeva for the first time in the set by rallying from a 0-30 disadvantage on service to start an eight-point run. Andreeva managed to pull off a two-game run of her own and positioned herself in position to cause an upset by playing flawless defense and breaking back straight.

In an attempt to save face, Sabalenka served to stay in the match. On the verge of defeat, she blasted a backhand down the line and saved a match point with another huge forehand. But Andreeva came up with a brilliant response, saving the second match point with a backhand winner and sealing the win with a skillfully placed lob over the head of the world No. 2.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *