Paula Badosa was seemingly devastated after falling just short of clinching her biggest win of the season against Elena Rybakina. On Saturday night, Badosa failed to convert a match point before 10th-ranked Rybakina stormed back to win 3-6 7-5 6-3.
Leading 6-3 5-4, Badosa had a match point on Rybakina's serve. Had former world No 2 Badosa converted it, it would have been her first top-10 win in 2023.
❤️🩹 — Paula Badosa (@paulabadosa) March 26, 2023
Badosa's rough start to 2023 continues
At the start of the season, Badosa suffered a thigh injury at the United Cup and was forced to skip the Australian Open.
After being out for a month and missing the Australian Open, Badosa returned to action during the Middle East swing. But since returning, Badosa is just 2-4. In Indian Wells, Badosa had a first-round bye and won her second-round match before Rybakina handed her a defeat in the third round.
In Miami, Badosa experienced the same fate as she had a first-round bye and won her opener before again losing to Rybakina in the third round. After saving a match point against Badosa, Rybakina explained how she was able to do it.
"Well, I was trying not to think that it's a match point, just try to fight every point. I think in the first set, I was playing not so bad, it was just some moments here and there and it didn't go my way. Paula played really well until the end, we both fought.
So, yeah, I'm just happy that I managed to win in three sets. I think I found my rhythm after I saved a match point. I started to move a bit better, I was pushing more on the serve and, yeah, overall, I think the first set was really close.
It was just a mistake here and there, a few from Paula and yeah, overall, I'm just pleased that I won this match," Rybakina said after beating Badosa.