Fri, Jun 21, 2019 - Page 16 News List

Hsieh falls to doubles partner Strycova

SIBLING RIVALRY:Kristyna Pliskova notched her first victory over a top-five ranked player by defeating her twin sister, Karolina Pliskova, and advanced to the quarters

By Dave Carroll  /  Staff reporter, with Reuters

Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei on Wednesday crashed out of the second round of the Nature Valley Classic in Birmingham, England, falling to her good friend and doubles partner Barbora Strycova, while Kristyna Pliskova pulled off the biggest victory of her career, but it was bad news for twin sister, Karolina.

Hsieh fell to a 7-6 (7/3), 6-3 defeat to her Czech doubles partner in 1 hour, 31 minutes on the grass courts at Edgbaston Priory Club.

World No. 51 Strycova did not face a single break point and converted one of four, winning 75 percent of points on her second serve to improve her career record over Hsieh to 4-3 after losing their previous meeting in Auckland, New Zealand, in January last year.

Hsieh and Strycova were yesterday due to team up again to take on Raquel Atawo and Kyudmyla Kichenok in the quarter-finals of the doubles.

In the singles, Strycova next faces Kristyna Pliskova, who defeated her twin sister, Karolina, 6-2, 3-6, 7-6 (9/7) on Wednesday.

The world No. 112 fired down 24 aces as she beat world No. 3 Karolina Pliskova in their first meeting on the WTA Tour to stay on course for a second career title.

It was Kristyna Pliskova’s first win over a top-five ranked player.

“I’m happy with the way I served today. I think we played the best that we could, but it was not easy for us. She was nervous as well. The serve was the key and I’m happy I won,” Kristyna Pliskova said.

The twins set up the second-round clash after Karolina Pliskova accepted a wild card and defeated Mihaela Buzarnescu on Monday, while Kristyna Pliskova came through three rounds of qualifying before beating Viktoriya Tomova.

“I know it’s been six years since we last played, but we were both stressed about it and on Centre Court you never know how it’s going to be,” said Kristyna Pliskova, who beat her sister in the Eastbourne qualifiers in 2013. “We played OK tennis, but it’s like this, one had to win. I can imagine how she feels, I would feel the same. Maybe she feels worse because she was the favorite.”

Kristyna Pliskova, two minutes older than her sister, broke early in contest and raced ahead 5-1 before closing out the opening set with an ace.

Former US Open finalist Karolina Pliskova responded strongly to drag the match into a decider.

Kristyna Pliskova surged 4-1 ahead in the third set, but Karolina Pliskova fought back to force a tiebreak.

A third double fault by Karolina Pliskova at 7-7 gave her twin match point and Kristyna Pliskova held her nerve to seal a memorable victory.

“We had a deal before the match that whoever wins is buying something for the other one, so I get a present,” Kristyna Pliskova said. “I think we do room service today and we just stay together because we shared a room. She has a day off, so maybe we’ll go shopping again and she pays.”

In the first round of the doubles, Taiwanese sisters Chan Hao-ching and Latisha Chan fell to a 6-4, 5-7, 10-4 defeat to fourth seeds Anna-Lena Groenefeld of Germany and Demi Schuurs of the Netherlands in 1 hour, 35 minutes.

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