Ajla stuns Elena

New Straits Times - - Sport -

MI­AMI: Elena Ves­nina, fresh off her vic­tory at In­dian Wells, crashed out of the Mi­ami Open on Fri­day af­ter a stun­ning 3-6, 64, 7-5 loss to World No 594 Ajla Toml­janovic.

The Croa­t­ian wild­card, who led Rus­sia’s 13th-seeded Elena 5-3 in the third set on Thurs­day when a thun­der­storm halted play, re­turned on Fri­day and cashed in on her third match point to se­cure a spot in the third round.

French Open cham­pion Gar­bine Mugu­ruza, whose open­ing match on Thurs­day was also in­ter­rupted, fared bet­ter than Elena af­ter her night’s sleep.

The sixth-seeded Spa­niard, who trailed 46th-ranked Amer­i­can Christina McHale 6-0, 3-2 when play was sus­pended on Thurs­day, es­caped a match point in the tiebreak and emerged with an 0-6, 7-6(6), 6-4 vic­tory.

Elena twice dou­ble-faulted to present the 23-year-old Croa­t­ian with match points af­ter re­turn­ing on Fri­day, but Ajla failed to cash in.

Yet an­other dou­ble fault by Elena made it 30-40 in the 12th game to put the Rus­sian on the brink of de­feat again be­fore a rain shower caused an­other de­lay.

This time the wait was worth the while for Ajla. When play re­sumed the Rus­sian net­ted a fore­hand to end it and send the wild card to the third round against Czech Lu­cie Sa­farova.

Elena com­mit­ted a dozen dou­ble faults in the two hour 12 minute match.

Ajla, af­ter en­dur­ing the ten­sion of such an on-again, off-again huge up­set, fig­ures to make time to cel­e­brate with her boyfriend Nick Kyr­gios, who is play­ing in the Mi­ami men’s event.

Ro­ma­nian third seed

Si­mona Halep was pushed to three sets by Ja­panese teenager Naomi

Osaka be­fore ad­vanc­ing 6-4, 2-6,

6-3, while seeds

Timea Ba­bos and

Roberta Vinci were also elim­i­nated.

France’s Pauline Par­men­tier over­came Hun­gar­ian Timea, the 24th seed, 67(1), 6-2, 6-0, and Amer­i­can qual­i­fier Tay­lor Townsend beat 25th seed Roberta of Italy 6-3, 6-2.

EPA PIC

Ajla Toml­janovic in ac­tion against Elena Ves­nina in the Mi­ami Open on Thurs­day. Ajla won 3-6, 6-4, 7-5.

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