World No. 100 Kaja Juvan admitted she was a bit scared at first of Aryna Sabalenka but then she collected and claimed the biggest win of her career. Juvan, a former world No. 90, stunned world No. 2 Sabalenka 7-6 (6) 6-1 in the Adelaide round-of-16.
Though she was scared at first, Juvan claimed she believed she could pull off an upset. "I was a little bit scared at first because she's incredible and she has done so many things really, really well. But on the other hand, it's the start of the season, it depends on the day a little bit, and I really believed that I could do it," Juvan said after the match, per Tennis Up To Date.
Juvan enjoyed the tightness of the first set
Juvan got off to a bad start as she dropped her serve in the first game but broke back in the fourth game. Juvan again lost her serve in the 11th game but didn't let Sabalenka serve out for the first set in the following game as she forced a tie-break.
In the tie-break, Juvan saved a set point before converting her first set point to steal the opener. After winning a tight first set, Juvan broke Sabalenka four times to claim a straight-set win. "I really enjoyed the first set.
I love when matches get tight, when it's competitive and when it's a really tight fight. I was feeling a little bit sorry at some points because I ... knew she's not doing the best with the serve and we all know how that feels at one point.
I know she can do it better, but on the other hand, I was just saying to myself, 'Focus. Stay here until the end. It can turn at any point.' I was really just trying to stay there until the very end and really fight," Juvan added.
Juvan will be fighting against Misaki Doi or Anastasia Gasanova for a place in the Adelaide semifinal. Juvan is having her first main draw appearance in Adelaide.