Victoria Azarenka got another big win on centre court at the Western & Southern Open Wednesday night. She kept her game well rounded and tight to beat Caroline Wozniacki 6-0, 6-4 at the Linder Family Tennis Center.
The two giants of tennis got back at it for a fourth time this season meeting up for some game changers. Victoria Azarenka has won the last four straight in two sets showing that her power had enough to down the Dane. Wozniacki currently deals with a leg muscle that has been putting her game into a tailspin. She lost her opening round matches at Stanford and Toronto to try and make things different a third time.
Azarenka made an example in her opening round dealing Lauren Davis a quick defeat in straight sets. With her eyes once again set on gaining the critical points necessary to get out of the hole and into a spot suitable for a seeding, the 26 year old would need to dig in through every match in her path.
After starting nearly two hours and 20 minutes late into the night, Azarenka was first to warm up her game taking the first two games on Wozniacki. Her fight to hold serve worked out staying ahead in the score while firing the ball across with perfect swings. She continued her run of success with another pair of wins widening the gap against the Dane. Unforced errors the current injury continued to wane on her.
The Dane showed resiliency in Game Five where she ran out every ball returning well against Azarenka to force deuce. The draw went to three breaks where the Belorussian held the break for a third time to serve for the set and the bagel. Wozniacki requested her father/coach to give her counsel having lost so much ground. After a minute of getting his daughter to calm herself, she went back to action with the former number one still hot off the racket.
Wozniacki was unable to gain leverage on the rally, as her runs for the ball were enough to continue it. She was able to find a moment in the game to rile her opponent, but the effort was short lived as Azarenka walked away with a perfect set victory ending it in 31 minutes. The 26-year-old Belorussian served 65 percent on the opening serve landing 8 of 11 while showing a strong return shot.
Wozniacki opened serve in the second set hoping that a change would show in her strike of the ball. It did its part taking a win that ended the Belorussian’s winning streak. Midway into the second game, Azarenka went to get a new racket as she felt the tension was lightening up. With the serve still in her end, Azarenka tried to put Wozniacki away but another battle on deuce ended in the hands of the Dane who now had her own winning streak building.
Wozniacki made it 3-0 on a terrific defense on serve where she rallied from behind to even up with Azarenka to play a quick break and hold the control. The Belorussian forced her way back anyway she could. It was done on serve hoping that she would be able to build her earlier success while Wozniacki was back on the ball. It worked out not just against Wozniacki but also on her own serve as she tied the set at three all. During Game Six, Wozniacki took her anger out on her racket but continued to play on, as all hope was not lost. She gained back the lead in Game Seven, but with Azarenka on serve for the eighth all her energy was in it to even up. After five breaks on deuce, it was Azarenka once again tied with Wozniacki at four all moving closer to a climax.
Azarenka made that moment inch closer as she dominated to break Wozniacki’s serve and take the ball in hand playing for the match. In what began as a pair of unforced errors for the Belorussian ended in a victory for her as she put the victory into her hands and never let go ending the match in 1 hour and 32 minutes. For the fans, they were lucky to have their night end just an hour short of midnight. “I know it’s been a long night but I appreciate you,” Azarenka told the fans.
“I felt like the first set I was play really well and executing my game,” Azarenka said during her on court interview. “Caroline is a type of player you cant win 6-0, 6-0 so at some point she’s gonna turn it up and she did in the second set being more aggressive and I missed a couple of shots there and there, but I’m glad I stayed strong and stayed aggressive and tried to employ my game to the end.”
While Wozniacki worries about her sluggish game, Azarenka will prepare a battle against Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the third round of action.