Carla Suárez Navarro faced Timea Bacsinszky for a spot in the quarterfinals in Rome. The Spaniard leads the series 4-2 and was looking to build on that. Suárez Navarro took the first set before Bacsinszky came back to grab the second set in a back and forth battle. In the end, it was the Swiss who played well under pressure winning the important points to nab a 5-7, 7-5, 6-2 victory to face Garbiñe Muguruza in the quarterfinals.
Topsy turvy set which Suárez Navarro conquers eventually
It took Bacsinszky seven and a half minutes to close out the first game having to fend off a break point in the process. If the first game was anything to go by it was looking set to be a long match. It was a sluggish start from the Spaniard though allowing Bacsinszky to break to love with an exquisite slice winner to take an early lead in the set. It wasn’t all smooth sailing for the Swiss though as Suárez Navarro was creating chances but just wasn’t able to capitalize on them with Bacsinszky coming up with the goods when it mattered in another long game to eventually build a 3-0 lead.
Suárez Navarro regrouped and was able to finally get on board after the changeover. She continued to threaten the Swiss’ serve and this time managed to find the break back despite Bacsinszky’s efforts to save another three of them. That break seemed to invigorate the Spaniard who was well and truly in the match finding winners from either side to win the next three games to run away with a 5-3 advantage.
Bacsinszky eventually stopped the rot with an important hold to make Suárez Navarro serve for the set. Despite being in control ever since the break back, the Spaniard made a string of errors to allow the Swiss to get back into the set at 5-5. The topsy-turvy set took yet another turn as Suárez Navarro put the poor game behind her, finding the break once more to edge 6-5. And this time, the Spaniard made no mistake and served out the set.
Bacsinszky edges a thrilling second set despite being behind for most parts of the set
The Spaniard created her first break opportunities of the set in the third game and took it to go 2-1 up after Bacsinszky fired her forehand long. Suárez Navarro went on to consolidate her break for a 3-1 lead. The Swiss was becoming increasingly frustrated as she could not find a way to break down the Spaniard but continued maintaining a grip on her own service games to keep herself in the match.
Bacsinszky carved out her first real chance after a rare error from Suáarez Navarro handed the Swiss break point in the eighth game. The Spaniard landed her shot into the net giving Bacsinszky the break back into the set for 4-4. After working hard to level the set, the Swiss went down a break yet again with Suárez Navarro turning up the intensity to fire a backhand winner to edge in front.
However, just like in the first set, the Spaniard succumbed to the pressure and failed to serve out the match handing the Swiss another lifeline in this cat and mouse match. Bacsinszky grabbed it and closed out her game to take the lead for the first time in the second set for 6-5. An error from the Spaniard then handed the Swiss set point. Suaárez Navarro crumbled under pressure once more overcooking her shot long as Bacsinszky grabbed the set to bring it to a decider.
Suárez Navarro crumbles as Bacsinszky cruises to victory
Bacsinszky started off the third set strongly growing in confidence to create her first break chance immediately on the Spaniard’s serve. Suárez Navarro though stood strong to defend and hold on for 1-1. As the match progressed, it was evident Bacsinszky was holding her service games with more ease than the Spaniard and looked more likely to break her opponent. The chances presented themselves to the Swiss in the fourth game which she then converted in style with one of her backhand winners.
Suárez Navarro was not going down without a fight though as she tried to find a way back into the set. Bacsinszky who looked steady throughout the set made a couple of errors to hand a double break point to the Spaniard. The Swiss again came up with some great shots to deny Suárez Navarro and hung on to her 4-1 lead.
Bacsinszky then hit another nail in the coffin getting the double break to serve for the match at 5-1. However, there was yet to be another twist though as the server once again let slip and failed to serve it out. The score was still very much in favor of the Swiss and that pressure was telling as Bacsinszky completed a 5-7, 7-5, 6-2 comeback victory.