Bianca Andreescu was the first player in the top half of the 2021 US Open women’s singles draw to reach the fourth round. The sixth-seeded Canadian needed merely 67 minutes to complete a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Belgian lucky loser, Greet Minnen.
Both players won their opening service games, with Andreescu winning hers relatively much easily as compared to Minnen. In the third game of the set, Andreescu faced a break point but was quickly able to eradicate it to go up 2-1 in the set.
From that moment on, the former champion didn’t look back and won the next six games on the trot to wrap up the set. The world no. 7’s run of consecutive games lasted up to the fourth game of the second set and it wasn’t until the fifth game of the set that Minnen was able to open her tally on the scoreboard.
Two games later, in a lengthy service game, Minnen saved a match point to win her third game in the match. Serving for the match in the eighth game, Andreescu didn’t extend the run of the proceedings and clinched victory on her second match point.
Andreescu had 21 winners to Minnen’s 17 and 11 unforced errors to Minnen’s 22. In the round-of-16, Andreescu will face 17th seed Maria Sakkari. The Greek ousted 10th seed Petra Kvitova 6-4, 6-3 in an hour and 21 minutes in their third-round encounter.
US Open: Maria Sakkari's upsetting run
Kvitova started off strongly in the first set but as it progressed, her shot-making produced errors that allowed Sakkari to dominate play. In comparison, Sakkari’s shots seldom missed their mark, helping her extricate herself from tight spots, a couple of times they came her way.
Kvitova lost her serve in the fifth game of the first set and wasn’t able to recover that break back for the rest of the set. A break of serve in the first game of the second set added to the Greek’s momentum. She had a handful of break points in the third and fifth games of the set but Kvitova saved the lot and kept the distance between her opponent and herself to just the one break of serve.
In the ninth game of the set, serving to stay in the match, an unforced error brought up match point for Sakkari. This was then followed by Kvitova hitting a double fault which allowed Sakkari to take her place in the second week at the Major.
Kvitova had 16 winners and more than twice as many unforced errors, 34. In comparison, Sakkari had 19 winners and 16 unforced errors. Among the early winners at the US Open on Saturday was also the 11th-seeded Belinda Bencic.
The Swiss won against the 23rd-seeded Jessica Pegula 6-2, 6-4 in an hour and 14 minutes. Bencic awaits either 28th seed Anett Kontaveit or seventh seed Iga Swiatek next. Photo Credit: Garrett Ellwood/USTA