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Venus Williams def Carla Suarez Navarro 63 36 61
Anastasija Sevastova’s come-from-behind upset of Maria Sharapova fanned the flames in Arthur Ashe Stadium on Sunday. The day’s first match saw three tie-break sets, as Pablo Carreno Busta punted 18-year-old Denis Shapovalov from the field. With Venus and Carla starting after 5:00, fans in Ashe knew they’d get their money’s worth; another day-session stretched into the night.
Venus and Carla didn’t disappoint
Fans were already fired-up before the opening introductions, as Emirates Airline teamed with 3-time US Open Champion Kim Clijsters to give away a trip for two to Dubai. Venus broke to start the match and we were off to the races. Venus burned through the first set in 43-minutes, stealing it with her third break, up 5-3.
Sunday was Carla Suarez Navarro’s 29th birthday. A quick defeat wasn’t in the cards. She opened set-2 with a break, broke again to go up 3-0, then leveled the match with her fourth service-steal of the day. The pendulum shifted again in the decider. After trading holds in the opening two games, Venus dominated the rest of the way, winning five consecutive games for the victory.
The resurgence of Venus Williams in 2017
Venus is now 19-3 at the Majors in 2017. She fell to pregnant sister Serena in Melbourne’s Final, reached the Round of 16 at Roland Garros, and ran out of steam in her 9th career Wimbledon Final appearance back in July. She’s enjoying a career-best season since being diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome at the 2011 US Open. Everyone is in awe, fellow players included. Her modest longevity, in spite of the setbacks, is inspiring; simply rooted in a genuine love for the sport.
The Quarterfinals will be no easy ask. Her options:
- Garbine Muguruza – who defeated Venus 7-5, 6-0 in the Wimbledon Final.
- Petra Kvitova – who Venus hasn’t defeated since a 2nd-Round clash in Miami five years ago. Petra is 4-1 against Venus, and has shown remarkable courage and determination since returning to the tour earlier this year at Roland Garros.