UPSET! Elina Svitolina Halted in Eastbourne, Loses Hard Fought Battle to Serena Williams’ Slayer Elena Rybakina at French Open
No.2 seed Elina Svitolina was ousted from WTA Eastbourne Open by Elena Rybakina, who had defeated Serena Williams at French Open 2021.
Rybakina looked solid in front of Svitolina early on. She maintained a strong serve and was hitting her stroke cleanly from the baseline. Rybakina was triumphing in the longer rallies, however, Svitolina was also using her experience. At 3-3, both the players survived initial jabs.
From 3-3, Svitolina was a bit conservative and Rybakina saw an opportunity. Svitolina saved her serve to lead 4-3, however Rybakina finished her service game in a minute to level the opening set, 4-4. No player had faced a break point until 4-4. Rybakina pressured Svitolina, and the Ukrainian gave a break point. Rybakina converted the opportunity to serve for the set, 5-4. Rybakina didn’t hesitate and took the first set, 6-4.
Svitolina was in turmoil as none of her backhand strokes were landing. Rybakina saw another break point in the first game, however, her backhand let her down. And while serving next, Rybakina hit multiple backhand unforced errors as Svitolina saw her first break points of the match. However, Rybakina regained her strong first serves and leveled the set, 1-1.
Perfect placement from Elena Rybakina #VikingInternational pic.twitter.com/j3jhNvwwB0
— wta (@WTA) June 23, 2021
Rybakina regained her rhythm on her backhand and hence was pouncing on every stroke. She needed just one break point to gain an advantage in the second set as Svitolina was frustrated. Rybakina extended her lead to 4-2 and looked to get a second break in the set. However, Svitolina held on and Rybakina was on a spot of bother. Svitolina converted her sixth break point in a seven-minute service game from Rybakina to level the set, 4-4.
However, Svitolina’s pure tennis continued as Rybakina dominated from the net to get the break back and serve for the match at 5-4. But nerves got the better of Rybakina as she faltered while serving for the set and Svitlolina survived again, 5-5. The set went into a tiebreaker, where Rybakina took the initial, 5-1 lead. Rybakina converted her fourth match point, 7-4 to win the match, 6-4, 7-6.
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