French player Marion Bartoli, the number five seed at the New Haven Open at Yale tournament being played this week in the run up to the US Open, made hard work of her match on Tuesday against the fast rising, stylish, accurate and hard hitting young American, Sloane Stephens. Often erratic, but more often than not hitting unbelievable winners from both wings with her double handed shots, Bartoli came out firing on all cylinders to take the first set 6-1, but all her bounce and nonstop energy seemed to dissipate in the second set, letting Stephens take it to love. In the third set, Stephens again took advantage of all Bartoli’s errors, racing to 3-0, before something clicked in Bartoli’s game. Not for the first time in her career she managed to stage a huge comeback, taking the next six games in a row and booked a quarterfinal encounter against Italy’s Sara Errani.
Errani came through against the American wildcard holder Bethanie Mattek-Sands in the first round of the tournament with a 6-4 7-5 scoreline; it was followed by a win over the Spanish player, Carla Suarez Navarro, 6-4 6-3 in the second round.
Top seed Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland was forced to retire in her second round match against Olga Govortsova because of her long standing shoulder injury. The Belarussian will play Maria Kirilenko of Russia for the semifinal place, after Kirilenko advanced into the QFs without having to put up a fight. Her German opponent Mona Barthel withdrew from their encounter with a stomach bug.
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