For the first time in her life, Sara has reached the 4th round of a Grand Slam.
She beat Sorana Cirstea 6-7, 6-0, 6-2. The first set was really close and tense. Early in the set both girls lost their serve twice, but then they held serve until the tiebreak, even though many games were close. In the tiebreak, Sara had one setpoint, which she couldn’t take, before Cirstea closed it out at 8-6. Sara had a good start in the second set, going 2-0 up, when Cirstea hurt her back. She was hindered by this through the whole set, but didn’t receive treatment for it. The set went really quickly; 6-0 to Sara. Between the second and third set, and several times during the third set, Cirstea did get treatment on her back, and this seemed to help, as her level of play increased. The first games of the third set were all close, but Sara managed to take a 4-0 lead. At this point, she got a little nervous, and the next 4 games were all breaks, but she managed to close out the match on 5-2 on Cirstea’s serve.
Sara played really well again and definitely won this match on her own merit. In the 4th round, she will play against Jie Zheng, who is having a really good start to the year.
There is a short video from Sara’s press conference in English here, a long video of her Italian press conference here, a short interview here another interview with Pablo Lozano here, and an article with quotes (and more audio) here and here. Of course there are also new pictures.