Berlin: Aryna Sabalenka retires injured in pain, Ons Jabeur retires versus Coco Gauff

Sabalenka concluded her Berlin campaign on Saturday, while Gauff is through to the semis.

by Dzevad Mesic
Berlin: Aryna Sabalenka retires injured in pain, Ons Jabeur retires versus Coco Gauff
© Getty Images Sport - Inaki Esnaola

Aryna Sabalenka's Berlin campaign has just finished in a very unfortunate way after the Belarusian was forced to retire due to a shoulder injury, while Coco Gauff progressed into the semifinal following an Ons Jabeur retirement and Jessica Pegula also completed a 7-6 (2) 3-6 6-3 win over Katerina Siniakova.

After not hitting the court on Friday due to rain, No. 2 seed Sabalenka and world No. 24 Kalinskaya started their Berlin quarterfinal this afternoon. 

When the match started, Sabalenka routinely served out the opening game of the match but then she got broken in the third game and also failed to convert any of her four break points in the fourth game. After falling down by an early break, Sabalenka got broken again in the fifth game and that's when it became clear that the two-time Grand Slam champion was struggling with something. 

After the physio was called to the court and Sabalenka was given treatment on her shoulder, the third seed attempted to continue the match but retired after Kalinskaya served out the sixth game to go 5-1 up.

With Wimbledon starting in eight days, Sabalenka certainly didn't want to be dealing with an injury now but at least she still has a week to get the treatment and address her shoulder issue. 

Meanwhile, Kalinskaya plays Victoria Azarenka in the Berlin semifinal later today. 

What happened in the Gauff and Jabeur match? 

Right from the start of the match, there wasn't much separating Gauff and Jabeur - there were a couple of early break points on both sides, but the American missed out on three break point chances while the Tunisian didn't manage to realize two early break point opportunities.

Then with Jabeur serving to stay in the first set in the 10th game, a real drama happened as the Tunisian saved a total of six set points to eventually force a tie-break. In the first-set tie-break, Jabeur even had three set points but Gauff didn't allow the former world No. 2 to steal her the first set after converting her eighth set point to win the tie-break with an 11-9 scoreline.

Coco Gauff
Coco Gauff © Getty Images Sport - Inaki Esnaola

After a first set that lasted an hour and nine minutes, Jabeur took a medical timeout - and after getting her temperate checked, Jabeur retired from the match due to illness. 

For a place in the Berlin final, Gauff plays against world No. 6 and her best friend Pegula.

How Pegula beat Siniakova?

After the first seven games went without a break, Pegula finally earned the first break of the match to open a 5-3 lead but then failed to serve out for the first set in the following game. After failing to close out the first set on her serve, the fourth-seeded American missed out on two more great chances to seal the first set after failing to realize two set points on Siniakova's serve in the 10th game and another set point in the 12th game.

However, Pegula didn't panic despite the missed opportunities as she won five consecutive points in the tie-break to open a 6-1 lead before realizing her fourth set point to win a tight first set.

Jessica Pegula
Jessica Pegula © Getty Images Sport - Inaki Esnaola

Down by a set, Siniakova took and blew an early second-set break but broke Pegula again in the fourth game to open a 3-1 lead. This time, the Czech tennis star made no mistake and served her way into the third set. 

But losing the second set didn't impact Pegula at all as the fourth-seeded American started the third set with a 3-0 lead before eventually opening a 4-2 lead. The match was then suspended due to rain. 

When the match resumed, Pegula needed just 15 minutes to close out the match as the American tennis star held on to her serve in the seventh and ninth games to complete a three-set win over Siniakova. 

Now, Pegula will try to beat her best friend Gauff and make her first Berlin final.

Aryna Sabalenka Ons Jabeur Coco Gauff