WTA Madrid: Carla Suarez Navarro maintains perfect record over Timea Babos

Carla Suarez Navarro recovered from a routine first set loss to clinch a spot in the Mutua Madrid Open. Her three-set win over Timea Babos was concluded in just under two hours on Manolo Santana

Babos Cruises To A Set Advantage

Carla Suarez Navarro and Timea Babos were set to meet for the third time in their careers. The Spaniard led Babos two wins to love in their head-to-head series, but the early, heavy hitting from the Hungarian showed a possibility of an upset. Babos began match proceedings into her liking with strong and effective serving. The pair exchanged holds, until the world number 40 broke Suarez Navarro for a 3-1 lead. A consolidation on the Hungarian's serve vaulted Babos to a four games to one edge. 

Timea Babos continued to roll on through the first set as she found herself within a game of the set after breaking the eighth seed in a lengthy sixth game. Babos was unable to close the set when she took the service line at 5-1. A strong hold from Suarez Navarro forced the Hungarian to serve for the set for the second time. This time, Babos was able to shut down the resilience of the Spaniard with a love hold, which ended a brilliant set of tennis in 32 minutes.

Timea Babos in Mutua Madrid Open action. Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
Timea Babos in Mutua Madrid Open action. Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Spaniard Serves Her Way To A Final Set

Carla Suarez Navarro opened up the second set with a love hold of her own after dropping the first set six games to three. The Spanish number two held two break points in the following game, but she was unable to capitalize. Babos followed the same misfortune of Suarez Navarro in the next game as she held three break points at one game apiece, but failed to convert. The match stayed on serve until sixth game of the set, where the number eight seed grabbed the first break of the set to move ahead 4-2. 

Carla Suarez Navarro seemed to have put the previous set behind her while she served up a commanding hold to take the upper hand. As the world number 11 lead five games to two, she grabbed the second set, 6-2, with a break to 30. The 40 minute set forced the match to a third set where both players would battle for their place in the second round of the prestigious clay court event in Madrid, Spain.

Carla Suarez Navarro in Mutua Madrid Open action. Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
Carla Suarez Navarro in Mutua Madrid Open action. Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Eighth Seed Closes Match In Style

Last year's Mutua Madrid Open quarterfinalist raced to an early break lead in the deciding set. Each of the first three games of the new set of tennis went to deuce, which displayed both player's will to fight for the opening round victory. Babos refused to trail down a double break as she defied with a love hold. Suarez Navarro maintained her exquisite play, and despite facing a break point at 3-1, the Spaniard inched ahead four games to one. Suddenly the match seemed out of reach for the underdog as she was broken for the fifth time to fall behind by a margin of four games.

The Spaniard dropped the next two games as the top-ranked Hungarian closed the gap, and the third set's score suddenly arrived at 5-3. But, Suarez Navarro denied Babos of another game. The home hope wrapped up her first round match in front of her native crowd, 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 to set up a second round clash with another powerhouse opponent.

Carla Suarez Navarro in Mutua Madrid Open action. Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images
Carla Suarez Navarro in Mutua Madrid Open action. Photo: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Suarez Navarro To Play Lisicki

Carla Suarez Navarro clinched her spot into the second round where she will take on a hard hitting German in Sabine Lisicki. The clash will see the Spaniard's craftiness and consistency match the German's dominant serve and forehand when they take the court come Tuesday.

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