Paula Badosa, the fourth Spaniard to play the Women’s Masters, debuted with an impressive victory over the world number two at the Pan American Tennis Center in Guadalajara (Mexico). The Catalan knocked down Aryna Sabalenka 6-4 and 6-0 in 1h: 16.
Badosa was back on the slopes 25 days after his outbreak in Indian Wells. Already installed in the world top-10, It remained to be seen how her head and physique would react to the situation of being among the top eight of the course. Before the end of a year in which he has risen 60 places in the WTA ranking, when fatigue already paralyzes the legs and clouds the mind. And he handled the situation masterfully.
LIGHTS OUT TENNIS! 🔥
– wta (@WTA) November 12, 2021
Sabalenka stormed out. Scream after scream, wild in its blows although sometimes run over, stood 4-2 in the first set in gale mode. The one from Minsk, who did not play Indian Wells when contracting COVID-19 (she was not vaccinated and was convinced to do so after becoming infected), was scary … everyone except Badosa.
With poise, the Spanish achieved an immediate counterbreak, varied her serves, neutralized the sticks from the semifinalist at Wimbledon and the US Open with setbacks parallel to the speed of light and was getting the Belarusian in a mess. Since that 4-2 against, he chained ten games in a row to win the first set (6-4) and fasten the second with a donut. Tremendous, with the number two rampant (31 unforced errors and eight double faults). In Cincinnati, in their only meeting, he had already won it in three suffered sets. In Guadalajara, he ended up going over the top taking advantage of the five break balls he had. He did not spare a single one.
“I am very happy with my performance, I did not expect that I could play an almost perfect match, and more in these conditions, “he said, referring to the almost 1,600 meters high of the capital of the state of Jalisco. “I have been aggressive when it was necessary and I played with confidence,” the Spaniard was delighted.
Badosa dominates the Chichén Itzá group and on Saturday she will face Maria Sakkari, the Greek who crushed Iga Swiatek 6-2, 6-4. “Each game is complicated and it will be a battle, because here are the best in the world, but I am super motivated to be in Mexico,” she summarized at the end before the support of the public, who already seems to have chosen their favorite. By merits.