Samantha Stosur escaped a tricky test against Patricia Maria Tig in straight-sets, 6-3, 6-4. The Australian battled her way into the Mutua Madrid Open semifinals after her well-earned win over the Romanian. The quarterfinal clash on Manolo Santana just exceeded an hour and a half on the divine red clay of Madrid.
Aussie Takes One-set Advantage
Stosur took the court against Tig for their first career meeting as they were to fight for a spot in the prestigious final four in the Spanish capital. They began the quarterfinal matchup with an exchange of holds. The set stayed on serve, despite the first two break points being faced in the fifth game before Stosur held in impressive fashion. The on serve trend was halted in the eighth game as the world number 23 grabbed a timely break for a 5-3 opening set lead.
The Aussie served for the first set, but quickly fell down break point. Tig was unable to capitalize, which pushed Stosur over the opening set finish line after a fairly comfortable six games to three win. The first set of the quarterfinal clash took 40 grueling minutes on Manolo Santana. The Australian then found herself within a set of her first semifinal in Madrid.
Stosur stays steady on serve to move into final four
The Romanian qualifier opened up second set play with a commanding hold to love for her first lead in the match up to that point. The Aussie followed with a hold of her own to level early second set proceedings. Tig stepped up to serve at one game apiece, and quickly went down two break points. The world number 134 prevailed to take her second lead in the match. The set did not see another break point until the set’s seventh game, where Stosur broke to 15 to put her within two games of advancing.
Last week’s J&T Banka Prague Open runner-up held in a lengthy game for a 6-3, 5-3 edge, and the finish line became within reach for Stosur. But the feisty Romanian held in clutch style to force the Australian to serve for the victory. Despite falling back love-40, Stosur clinched the quarterfinal win over the in-form qualifier after an hour and 32 minutes in front of the energetic crowd of the Spanish capital.
Australian to play second consecutive Romanian
The 32-year-old booked a semifinal clash with the only seed left in the elite draw, Simona Halep. The pair’s head-to-head series is tied at three wins apiece, but their last three encounters have gone in Halep’s favor. The variety and spin from Stosur will make for an interesting matchup against the all-court game of the sixth seed on Friday.