Abu Dhabi: Emma Raducanu misses out on chance to achieve something for first time

Raducanu exited the Abu Dhabi Open in the round-of-16.

by Dzevad Mesic
Abu Dhabi: Emma Raducanu misses out on chance to achieve something for first time
© Getty Images Sport - Christopher Pike

Emma Raducanu has failed to register her first-ever top-10 win after losing to world No. 6 Ons Jabeur in Abu Dhabi.

On Wednesday, former world No. 10 Raducanu had a chance to beat a top-10 player for the first time in her career. Unfortunately for 21-year-old Raducanu, that didn't happen after No. 2 seed Jabeur ousted her with a 6-4 6-1 scoreline.

Right from the start, Jabeur imposed her game on Raducanu, breaking the Briton in the first and fifth games en route to opening a comfortable 5-1 lead. Down by two breaks, Raducanu refused to quit, saving two set points in the eighth game and two more set points on her serve in the ninth game to reduce the deficit to 5-4. But Jabeur didn't allow Raducanu to fully get back into the first set as the Tunisian managed to her fifth set point in the 10th game and successfully serve out for the opener.

After losing the first set, Raducanu served out the opening game of the second set. In the end, that turned out to be all from Raducanu as Jabeur won the next six games to seal a straight-set win in style. 

Emma Raducanu
Emma Raducanu© Getty Images Sport - Christopher Pike

Jabeur beats Raducanu to set up a Beatriz Haddad Maia matchup

In the next match, Jabeur will be taking on sixth-seeded Haddad Maia, who won a marathon against Magda Linette. In a match that lasted three hours and 42 minutes, world No. 13 Haddad Maia managed to beat Linette 7-6 (6) 6-7 (1) 6-1 and progress into the Abu Dhabi quarterfinal. 

Haddad Maia didn't start the match well, getting broken in the very first game of the match. After saving two consecutive break points in the third game and avoiding going down by a double break, Haddad Maia managed to get the break back in the sixth game and tie the opener to three games apiece.

As no more break points were seen in the first set - the opener had to be resolved in a tie-break - where Haddad Maia realized her second set point to win a tight opener that lasted nearly an hour and a half. 

In the second set, the first to break was Linette, who broke Haddad Maia in the eighth game for a 5-3 lead. But just when it seemed the second set would soon be over, Linette failed to serve out for the second set as Haddad Maia got the break back and the second set eventually went into another tie-break.

This time, Linette did much better as she won six consecutive points from 1-1 to win the second-set tie-break and force a decider.

After losing the second set, Haddad Maia faced early third-set break points but managed to save two consecutive break points in the first game and another break point in the third game. Linette paid the price for not realizing her break point chances as Haddad Maia claimed back-to-back breaks in the fourth and sixth games and finished the match on a run of five consecutive games won.

Beatriz Haddad Maia
Beatriz Haddad Maia© Getty Images Sport - Christopher Pike

Daria Kasatkina, Sorana Cirstea were also victorious on Wednesday

In the opening match of Wednesday's schedule in Abu Dhabi, No. 7 seed Kasatkina ousted 82nd-ranked Ashlyn Krueger 6-3 7-5.

Kasatkina made a bit of a slow start to the match as Krueger broke the Russian in the second game for an early 2-0 lead. However, it didn't take long before Kasatkina responded, breaking Krueger in the third and fifth games and winning the next four games to overturn an early deficit and take a 4-2 lead. 

In the eighth game, Krueger had a chance to get the break back but Kasatkina saved a break point to go 5-3 up. In the following game - when Krueger was serving to stay in the first set - Kasatkina earned her third break of the first set to clinch the opener.

After winning the first set, Kasatkina missed out on a chance to also break Krueger early in the second set as the Russian missed out on three break points in the fourth game. Kasatkina maybe didn't get a break in the fourth game but she also didn't allow Krueger to go up by a break in the seventh game, saving the American's first break point of the set. 

In the seventh game - when Krueger was serving to stay in the match - Kasatkina got the first break of the second set to complete a two-set win.

Daria Kasatkina
Daria Kasatkina© Getty Images Sport - Christopher Pike

By beating Krueger, Kasatkina set up a match against world No. 26 Sorana Cirstea, who destroyed third-seeded Maria Sakkari 6-2 6-1.

Although Sakkari entered the match as the slight favorite, Cirstea was the one who came out firing as the Romanian started the match with back-to-back breaks and a 4-0 lead. In the seventh game, Cirstea missed out on six set points on Sakkari's serve but realized her seventh set point on her serve in the following game.

Sorana Cirstea
Sorana Cirstea© Getty Images Sport - Francois Nel

After easily winning the first set, Cirstea also made a strong start to the second set, breaking Sakkari in the first and fifth games en route to opening a 5-1 lead. In the seventh game - when Sakkari was serving to stay in the match - Cirstea broke the Greek for the third time in the set to complete a two-set win.

Emma Raducanu