Sat, Jul 28, 2018 - Page 16 News List

Liang falls to Linette in Jiangxi Open quarter-finals

By Dave Carroll  /  Staff reporter

Taiwan’s Liang En-shuo’s bid for a first WTA Tour title was yesterday ended by third seed Magda Linette at the Jiangxi Open in Nanchang, China, but her progress to the quarter-finals will see her ranking improve next week.

The 17-year-old world No. 405, who won the Australian Open girls’ singles title in January, fell to a 6-3, 4-6, 6-2 defeat to the Polish world No. 80 in 1 hour, 55 minutes in the first of yesterday’s quarter-finals.

In the first set, Liang converted one of the two break points she created, but failed to save three of four, with just a 39 percent success rate on her first serve.

However, the Taiwanese improved her first-serve percentage to 76 in the second set, did not face a single break point and converted one of five.

Liang wasted three set points with Linette serving at 3-5, 0-40, but the Taiwanese held her nerve in her next service game to level the match in which both players were suffering in the sweltering conditions.

Following a suspension due to the heat, it was the third seed who returned stronger in the deciding set, saving the only break point she faced and converting the two she created to advance to a semi-final against second seed Wang Qiang, who routed fellow Chinese Liu Fangzhou 6-3, 6-0 in 61 minutes.

In the qualifiers, Liang defeated Chinese world No. 295 You Xiaodi 4-3, 6-3, 7-5 and then Australian world No. 347 Naiktha Bains 3-6, 6-4, 6-4.

In the first round in Nanchang she ousted Chinese world No. 514 Zheng Wushuang 6-3, 6-3, before dispatching Thai world No. 311 Peangtarn Plipuech 6-1, 6-2 in the second.

Liang in May captured her first ITF singles title in Incheon, South Korea, when she defeated home favorite Han Na-lae 6-2, 0-6, 7-5 in the final.

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