Jelena Jankovic made a break the in the second set to end what started as an even strength match at the Rogers Cup Tuesday. The Serb made it hers to win over France’s Caroline Garcia winning 7-6(4), 6-2 on Centre Court.
This made the fourth time the Europeans have been at each other and the first in over a year. While the Serb has the series lead, it would be the chance for the Frenchwoman to get on an even keel with her opponent. Recently, Garcia has been away from tennis since her opening round loss to Heather Watson at Wimbledon last month. She did make an appearance at the Bank of the West Classic but failed to get out of the first round.
Jankovic has been on a similar path since her exit from Wimbledon in the fourth round. The efforts to get into the Istanbul Cup were successful but brief losing to Urszula Radwanska in three sets. With both looking for a win the fight for victory would be a desperate effort coming from both sides.
Both began the opening set feeling each other out where they each had easy wins on the service and a challenge from the opposition. It led to a two all score through four games with the edge going to Garcia who was tallying the winners on Jankovic. Despite the success on serve, she couldn’t break from the Serb, as they remained tied through six games.
Both Jankovic and Garcia held their serves that led to the tie despite the heavy wind that was flowing across the tennis court. It didn’t stop either player from playing strong on their serve that then led to a 5-5 tie pushing the set towards a tiebreaker. The match made its way their as the two players weren’t allowing an inch to each other.
After a three all tie in the tiebreaker, Jankovic was first to break ahead taking a 5-3 lead on Garcia. The Frenchwoman started to make shots long that led to Jankovic to the win on the 7-4 score. It took 55 minutes to conclude the set with both leveled against one another.
The second started a little differently but with no smooth ease. Garcia made the break of serve on Jankovic to take lead opening lead. The Serb kept the tie going to force deuce on Garcia breaking serve as well. She did more than that taking the lead through four games as the leverage was dipping far into her favor. Another battle ensued on deuce in Game Five with Garcia trying to do anything to break the monotony of Jankovic’s dominance. Her attempts went unanswered as she found herself down 4-1 with the Serb inching closer to victory.
Before she could record a fourth straight, Garcia had plans to break the streak. In Game Six, she won it on two game points to cut the lead in half still having hope of her comeback. It didn’t help in the seventh as Jankovic forced another break while on serve to set herself for a chance to put the match away. She made it happen on two match points landing a shot away from the Frenchwoman ending the bout in 97 minutes.
“Overall it was a very tough match,” Jankovic told Sportsnet during her on court interview. “Caroline played so well and I lost to her a lot when we played but I’m glad to have stayed strong and play every point.”
The set was clearly in Jankovic’s control as she finished with a 61 percent first service landing 15 of 23 on Garcia. The break points made a difference winning seven of eight and 14 of 24 on the return. With her victory, the tournament gears up a few notches, as she’ll take on second seeded Simona Halep who knows how to handle the Serb.