Thank you for following along here on VAVEL . The recap of the match will be up shortly. This is Don Han saying so long!
Sevastova would now face home favourite Sloane Stephens in the quarterfinals for a place in the semis. Stephens reached the semifinals in both Toronto and Cincinnati; could it be a third one here in New York?
Match Statistics (Sharapova):
- 67 percent first serve won
- 37 percent net points won
- 50 percent break points won
42 winners, 51 unforced errors (Made 4 W, 18 UE in the final set)
Match Statistics (Sevastova):
- 78 percent first serve won
- 86 percent net points won
- 83 percent break points won
21 winners, 14 unforced errors
Meanwhile, it has also been a positive tournament from Sharapova having not known if she was healthy enough to be in action days before the competition. Beating the world number two and winning two three-set matches for a return into the Top 100, it was truly impressive for the Russian.
What an inspired performance by Sevastova! Fought back from a set (and break points down in the second set) down, and eventually overcame her nerves to book her spot in a second consecutive quarterfinal at the US Open!
Game, Set and Match: Anastasija Sevastova. Great first serve and Sharapova sends the backhand wide!
40-AD: Great first serve followed up by a good follow-up
40-40: Sharapova looking uncomfortable but still saves the third match point
AD-40: The forehand seems to decide everything as she hits another error off that wing
40-40: ANOTHER forehand winner off the second serve! All of a sudden, we are back to deuce!
40-30: Powerful return to save one of them, but there is still one more...
40-15: 50 unforced errors from the Russian here and Sevastova has match points
30-15: Sharapova hits a return winner!
30-0: Sharapova has no rhythm on her shots, and her 16h unforced error in the decider puts Sevastova two points away
15-0: Sevastova three points away, with Sharapova hitting yet another forehand error
Sharapova 7-5 4-6 2-5* Sevastova: The Latvian regains the double-break lead and will now serve for a place in the quarterfinals
30-40: Sevastova's slices are causing A LOT of trouble for Sharapova, and she earns break point.
30-30: That forehand used to be a weapon. Now it is a burden as Sharapova has another error off that shot again
30-15: A powerful serve from Sharapova!
15-15: A backhand from Sharapova directly goes into the net
15-0: Sevastova sends a forehand just wide
Sharapova 7-5 4-6 *2-4 Sevastova: The Russian is in deep trouble once again, with Sevastova strolling through her service games
40-0: THREE consecutive forehand unforced errors
30-0: The forehand is getting atrocious here for the Russian
15-0: ANOTHER unforced error on the forehand by Sharapova
Sharapova 7-5 4-6 2-3* Sevastova: Sharapova lessens the deficit to just one game but the blister on the Russian's right hand causing some voices of concern. The trainer comes out for Maria once again
40-30: A backhand slice from Sevastova into the net and Sharapova earns game point out of nowhere!
30-30: Sevastova looking untroubled at the moment, with Sharapova's movement around the court looking a little hindered
30-15: Sevastova nets a backhand and Sharapova is having a chance to get back into contention
15-15: A huge drive volley goes STRAIGHT into the net and that could have just taken away her momentum.
15-0: Some spirited play from Sharapova now
Sharapova 7-5 4-6 *1-3 Sevastova: Sharapova gets one of the breaks back having benefitted from a double fault!
15-40: Big return forces an error from Sevastova and it is two break points for Sharapova!
15-30: Forehand down-the-line was just narrowly wide for Sevastova
15-15: Sharapova stops the rout of losing 13 straight points. Double fault from Sevastova
15-0: Better groundstrokes for Sharapova, but she continues to make errors at the net
That was TWELVE straight points going to Sevastova after the first point of the set.
Sharapova 7-5 4-6 0-3* Sevastova: Sharapova calls for the trainer during the changeover
0-40: A failed drop shot attempt goes into the net, and it is three break points
0-30: IMPRESSIVE drop shot winner from Sevastova!
0-15: Sharapova has another forehand unforced error...
Sharapova 7-5 4-6 *0-2 Sevastova: FOUR games in a row for Sevastova here. Sharapova is unable to get anything going by
40-0: Nice job by Sevastova to lure Sharapova into the net, and she successfully passes her there to lead 40-0
30-0: A huge forehand return goes straight into the net and Sevastova need not do anything much to win points now
15-0: Everything going WRONG for Sharapova fight now. Sends another forehand into the net
Sharapova 7-5 4-6 0-1* Sevastova: Sharapova in DEEP trouble here. Throws in a second double fault in the game to gift the Latvian with the early break in the final set
15-40: A net cord ruins Sharapova's rhythm, and Sevastova earns two break points
15-30: Yet another forehand error...
15-15: A double fault gives Sevastova her first point of the decider
15-0: Sharapova has a great start with some powerful strokes
Final set, Sharapova to start serving
A solid set played by Sevastova, hitting only two unforced errors. Sharapova missed all three of her break point opportunities, while Sevastova was 1/1 on break point
Sharapova 7-5, 4-6 Sevastova: Another return goes long and the Latvian fights back!
40-30: Set point for Sevastova!
30-30: A backhand slice goes wide for Sevastova
30-15: Sharapova finally sends the forehand return winner in!
30-0: A big forehand return goes all wrong for the five-time Grand Slam champion
15-0: Sevastova brings Sharapova into the net with a drop shot, but the Russian nets the following shot
Sharapova 7-5 4-5* Sevastova: The Latvian is serving for the second set now
40-0: Another great drive volley by the Russian!
30-0: Good offensive play by Sharapova!
15-0: Sharapova gaining the momentum once more, shouting a loud "Come On!" after winning the point!
Sharapova 7-5 *3-5 Sevastova: The Latvian wins another net point and she is just one game away from taking the second set!
AD-40: Sevastova earns a game point, benefitting from yet another unforced error
That return was found to be IN, as shown by ESPN in their broadcast! Sharapova made the costly decision not to challenge, but it was understandable considering it was her last challenge remaining.
40-40: A backhand return was sent just long by the Russian
40-AD: Second break point for Sharapova as she sends a BOOMING forehand return winner down-the-line! Sevastova getting frustrated with herself
40-40: Great return and Sevastova sends her second shot long! Back to deuce
AD-40: Sharapova wasting her chances thus far, netting another forehand return
40-40: Excellent first serve from Sevastova and the Russian nets the return
30-40: Powerful forehands from Maria and out of nowhere, she earns a break point!
30-30: Sharapova slowly gaining back the confidence!
30-15: WHAT A VOLLEY! Sharapova stretches out and hits a quick forehand volley winner!
30-0: Another big forehand goes wide for the Russian
15-0: Sharapova sends a big forehand return wide
Sharapova 7-5 *3-4 Sevastova: WHAT A POINT! Sevastova brings Sharapova into the net twice in this rally, and on both occasions, she lobs the 1.88 m tall Russian which forced her to use her left hand to hit a "moonball". The third time Sevastova attempted to bring Sharapova into the net, her drop shot landed up in the net and Sharapova wins the epic point! BEST POINT OF THE MATCH!
40-30: That ace could not have came at a better time for the former world number one
30-30: A good second serve from Sharapova and a long return allows to the Russian to shout "Come On!'
15-30: Sharapova getting really frustrated with herself as yet another forehand goes wide
15-15: A bad miss into the net for Sharapova, with Sevastova playing with well-controlled aggression now
15-0: Great service winner off the second serve!
Sharapova 7-5 *2-4 Sevastova: Great hands at the net by the Latvian once more!
40-30: A wild forehand goes wide for the Russian
30-30: All of a sudden, Sharapova returns into contention! Running forehand down-the-line winner!
30-15: Great drop shot from Sharapova!
30-0: Another narrow miss from the former champion
15-0: A huge forehand return from Sharapova lands a little wide
Sharapova 7-5 2-3* Sevastova: Flawless service game for the Russian here
40-0: That was a 95 mph second serve! Low first serve percentage for Sharapova but her second serves saved her from a larger deficit
30-0: Sevastova's defense crumbles as Sharapova's offense is just too good for her
15-0: FINALLY a great point won from Sharapova! She seemed to have found her rhythm on the forehands once again, hitting a clean winner to finish off the point
Sharapova 7-5 *1-3 Sevastova: Pressure obviously on the Russian now, who looks to be low on confidence currently
40-0: Sharapova's forehand down-the-line attempt goes long
30-0: Amazing reaction to a net cord by Sevastova, who produces a drop shot at the net to clinch the point!
15-0: Sharapova gets aggressive, but is yet AGAIN unable to close out the point
Sharapova 7-5 1-2* Sevastova: A failed Hawk Eye challenge from the Russian gifts Sevastova the break, and allows the Latvian to take the lead for the first time in the match. Sharapova had the upper hand throughout the rally, but lost confidence on her used-to-be efficient drive volleys, failing to close out the point
Sharapova unable to constantly find her first serves now.
40-AD: Sevastova has a very lucky net cord going in her way, and earns a game point
40-40: An inside-out forehand goes wrong for the 2006 champion, allowing Sevastova to get to deuce
40-30: Sharapova gains the rhythm on her drive volley, and it is a game point
30-30: Forehand winner from Sevastova! Finally, the Latvian manages to dictate play
30-15: Great aggressive play from Sharapova, who forces an error from Sevastova once again
15-15: Big forehand winner from the Russian
0-15: A close forehand goes wide for Sharapova
Sharapova 7-5 *1-1 Sevastova: What an amazing drop shot by the Latvian to escape from the brink!
AD-40: Great cross-court return by the former world number one but she makes a costly error at the net once more
40-40: Backhand sent into the net by Sharapova and the Latvian stays in this game for at least one more point
30-40: Yet ANOTHER forehand return winner by the Russian, and it is break point!
30-30: The backhand is working well too! Sharapova has a chance at breaking serve now
30-15: Forehand error from Sharapova
15-15: An impressive forehand winner from Sevastova
0-15: What a return winner by Sharapova!
96 percent of Sharapova's shots today came inside the baseline, while 88 percent of Sevastova's shots came behind the baseline. Explains a lot while the Russian is triumphing currently
Sharapova 7-5 1-0* Sevastova: Sharapova finally hits her first volley winner to seal the opening game!
40-15: Nice forehand by Sevastova for her to get her first point in this set!
40-0: Sharapova's momentum driving her through this first game of the second set. No words could describe how well she is playing currently.
30-0: First Hawk Eye challenge by Sharapova and she made a correct judgment! Sevastova's return was originally called in but after the challenge, it was found out to be just wide.
15-0: That forehand is just MERCILESS after the changeover at 6-5, Sharapova has the perfect start to the second set!
Second set, Sharapova to serve first
Sharapova 7-5 Sevastova: WHAT A WAY to claim the opening set! Forehand return winner of the FIRST SERVE of Sevastova and Sharapova overcomes a mid-match wobble to claim the first set 7-5 after 51 minutes of play
15-40: RUTHLESS attack by Sharapova! Two set points for the Russian
15-30: The speed of Sharapova's forehands noticeably increased after the changeover. Sevastova struggling to return them
15-15: A misfoot by Sharapova allows Sevastova to hit a forehand winner into the open court
0-15: Sevastova cannot handle the power of Sharapova's forehands and commits an error
Sharapova 6-5 Sevastova*: Sharapova looking a little inconsistent but edges through in her service game with a powerful winner at the net
40-30: The forehand causes some trouble for Sharapova once again
40-15: Ace down the tee for the Russian gives her game points!
30-15: A forehand into the net for Sharapova, who is accumulating some huge amount of unforced errors today
30-0: Good aggression from Sharapova
Meanwhile, the winner of this match will face the winner of the other fourth-round match between Julia Goerges and Sloane Stephens. Goerges and Stephens are currently in action as well!
15-0: Great winner in response to a Sevastova drop shot by the Russian!
Sharapova *5-5 Sevastova: The Latvian looking confident and solid thus far, with Sharapova losing a 4-1 lead already.
40-15: Amazing hands at the net from Sevastova manage to help her outclass Sharapova, who already put in several poor drop shots thus far.
30-15: Powerful 107 mph serve from Sevastova seals the deal
15-15: Impressive forehand on-the-run winner by the Latvian!
0-15: Powerful forehand return forces an error from Sevastova
Sevastova serving to stay in the opening set now
Sharapova 5-4* Sevastova: The vintage Russian is back with her famous "Come On!", hitting a big forehand winner to stop the rout and be just a game away from claiming the first set!
40-15: A GREAT forehand by Sharapova! Impressive considering she had to go against the dangerous slices, and was under tremendous pressure!
30-15: The pace on the serve is too much for Sevastova, who hits a backhand wide
15-15: Third double-fault for Sharapova
15-0: Sevastova's forehand goes wide but Sharapova unable to get past the stubborn defense so far
Sharapova *4-4 Sevastova: Another backhand goes into the net for the former world number one, and the Latvian looks absolutely confident with her game right now
40-30: Second CONSECUTIVE return winner by Sharapova! This time, it is on the forehand! Some positives for the Russian here
40-15: Strong backhand return winner by the Russian!
40-0: Forehands looking disastrous for Sharapova there, but credit to Sevastova for playing some solid tennis!
30-0: ANOTHER drive volley error into the net by Sharapova, who is a shadow of herself as compared to the start of the match
15-0: Yet another return sent long by Sharapova
Sharapova became increasingly erratic in the past few games and failed to finish off the points when being on the offense. Her unforced errors allow Sevastova, who is playing some passive tennis, to break straight back out of nowhere.
Sharapova 4-3* Sevastova: Sharapova wastes two game points and hits a costly drive volley error, gifting the break back to the Latvian and we return on serve all of a sudden.
40-AD: Sharapova looks to finish off the point at the net but her "awkwardness" there proved to be costly
40-40: The net seems to be an enemy for Sharapova today. An unlucky net cord sends a big forehand wide and it is deuce
40-30: IMPRESSIVE backhand disguised drop shot by Sevastova!
40-15: "AcePova!" Sharapova has her first ace of the day and it is two game points!
30-15: Great body serve by Sharapova, forcing Sevastova to send the return into the net
15-15: Sharapova's forehands continue to rock it! A forehand down-the-line winner just clipping the line!
0-15: Poor start from Sharapova in her service game. Second double-fault of the day
Sharapova *4-2 Sevastova: The five-time Grand Slam champion sends a return wide and the Latvian narrows the deficit!
40-0: Some great hands at the net from Sevastova
30-0: What a down-the-line winner by Sevastova! Sharapova was looking to close out the point but often hits the big shot back to the Latvian, who makes the passing shot and produces a loud "Come on!"
15-0: Sharapova had the chance to close out the point with Sevastova all over the place, but misses a backhand completely
Sevastova has to take her chances against Sharapova. She always has the chances to dictate play in the baseline rallies but she is not taking them. Often enough, Sharapova takes advantage of some poor shots by the Latvian and turn things in her favour. Sevastova has to start attacking the second serves of the Russian if she were to mount a comeback from here.
Sharapova 4-1* Sevastova: The Russian looks absolutely on fire when it comes to her serve! She consolidates the break for a huge 4-1 lead after just 22 minutes
AD-40: A failed drop shot attempt by the Latvian and Sharapova earns a game point. Sevastova is playing too passively.
40-40: Well-placed 99 mph serve down the tee for Sharapova, forcing an error out of Sevastova to save break point.
40-AD: Sharapova is getting erratic after claiming the break. Sevastova has the golden opportunity to break back!
40-40: A slightly off dropshot allows Sevastova to exploit the loophole in Sharapova's net game, deuce we go and the Latvian looks to make an immediate reply!
40-30: Great follow-up to a powerful serve! Game point for Maria to consolidate her break
30-30: First poor error from Sharapova, sending a backhand down-the-line attempt into the net
30-15: A return sent wide by Sevastova once again
15-15: "Double fault-Pova" makes an appearance
15-0: Sevastova sends a forehand wide
Sharapova *3-1 Sevastova: Break for the Russian! Sevastova unable to handle the power and accuracy of Sharapova's down-the-line shots
15-40: Great defense from Sevastova but a failed drop shot attempt eventually gifts Sharapova two break points!
15-30: Good serve but a slight hesitation by Sevastova saw her send the drive volley wide
15-15: Return into the net by Sharapova
0-15: Sharapova wins her first point on the return with the help of a forehand error by Sevastova
In case you were wondering: Sharapova is a natural born left-hander!
Sharapova 2-1* Sevastova: What a beautiful drop shot by the Russian to seal her service game!
40-0: Sharapova's forehand down-the-line rocking it today. Three game points!
30-0: A poor drop shot from Sharapova got her into trouble, but after some tussle, the Russian gets back into her aggressive self and finishes off the point! Sharapova even used her left hand in the rally!
15-0: Best rally of the match so far! Amazing defense by Sevastova, who kept sending balls back with slices, but Sharapova remains unfazed and hits a big forehand to seal it!
Sharapova *1-1 Sevastova: A nice little drop shot off a net cord by Sevastova! One game all after seven minutes
40-0: A backhand return just slightly wide from Sharapova
30-0: A wild forehand error from the former world number one gifts Sevastova the point
15-0: Good start for Sevastova on her serve, dictating play in the baseline rallies
Sharapova 1-0* Sevastova: Sharapova blasts a 105 mph serve, and seals the nervy opening game!
AD-40: Sharapova's 100 mph serve wins the point for her!
40-40: A sliced return from Sevastova proves to be too good for Sharapova, who is unable to reach it
40-30: Amazing forehand cross-court winner from Sharapova! A slice from Sevastova did not trouble the Russian as she smacks a winner on the line, letting out a "Come on!"
30-30: Another error on the forehand for the Russian. 2/2 on second serve points, 0/2 on first serve points thus far
30-15: Sharapova makes a costly error on her drive volley
30-0: Sharapova frustrates Sevastova with the depth on her groundstrokes, forcing an error from the Latvian
15-0: Impressive backhand winner on the first point by Sharapova!
Maria Sharapova to serve
Who do you think is the underdog of the match?
Sharapova because of her lacklustre performances in her last matches, or Sevastova because of the Russian's status?
We will see in a short while!
Our umpire for the match would be Jake Garner from USA!
Sevastova has not lost a set coming into the second week, while Sharapova struggled against some tricky opponents.
Anastasija Sevastova has won the coin toss and elected to receive.
Match Prediction: Anastasija Sevastova in three sets
The consistent Sevastova might just prove too strong for the Russian here, who has been erratic in her last matches.
"I like playing on Ashe, and it is a privilege to be playing here. I have to play my best against Maria. She is a great competitior, she never gives up and I have great respect for her" ~ Sevastova in her short interview before walking out on court.
"Well it was a great experience before, and I am excited to go out to the stadium." ~ Maria Sharapova plays her fourth consecutive match on Arthur Ashe today.
A reminder that the Latvian managed to beat Garbine Muguruza and Johanna Konta in her last appearances in the Arthur Ashe Stadium!
The roof would be opened for this match! This is going to be a slight disadvantage for Maria here.
Sharapova, the 2006 champion, and Sevastova, the 2016 quarterfinalist, is about to step onto the court
UPDATE: Carreno Busta has beaten Shapovalov 7-6 7-6 7-6 and Sharapova - Sevastova should start play in around 20 minutes!
We have some good news around the grounds here! Play has resumed on the outer courts, mainly the doubles and junior matches!
UPDATE: Pablo Carreno Busta is leading Denis Shapovalov 7-6 (2), 7-6 (4) in their thrilling fourth-round match. We are edging closer to the start of this match!
The Order of Play for Arthur Ashe Stadium for today is as follows:
Day Session (Starts at 11 am local time)
1. Denis SHAPOVALOV vs Pablo CARRENO BUSTA
2. Anastasija SEVASTOVA vs Maria SHARAPOVA
3. Carla SUAREZ NAVARRO vs Venus WILLIAMS
Night Session (Not Before 7 pm local time)
4. Petra KVITOVA vs Garbine MUGURUZA
5. Sam QUERREY vs Mischa ZVEREV
For those interested, these are the fourth round matches for the bottom half in the women's draw.
Carla SUAREZ NAVARRO vs  Venus WILLIAMS
 Petra KVITOVA vs  Garbine MUGURUZA
 Julia GOERGES vs [PR] Sloane STEPHENS
 Anastasija SEVASTOVA vs [WC] Maria SHARAPOVA
Good morning to people in New York! There is currently rain outside, and therefore Shapovalov and Carreno Busta are playing under the roof in Arthur Ashe! Most likely, the roof will remain for Sharapova vs Sevastova too!
Do return at 2 pm ET on the 3rd of September 2017 (estimated time as it follows Shapovalov-Carreno Busta) for the live commentary of this exciting match-up!
The winner of this match will face either Julia Goerges or Sloane Stephens in the quarterfinals. Both of them are in great form and they will definitely pose some problems for the winner here.
Sevastova possesses some solid and consistent groundstrokes but they do not match up with Sharapova in terms of power. Her serve is also relatively decent, with her quick movement around the court potentially lessening the effect of Sharapova's drop shots.
Sharapova has to beware of Sevastova's crafty slices — and those slices were what she struggled with against Babos. Playing a defensive player is never easy for a hard-hitter like the Russian, needing extra patience since the opponent would definitely return most shots back to you.
Talking about tactics and playing styles, it could be tricky for both players. The weather forecast is predicted to be poor for the day, and thus the roof could most likely come into play throughout the whole match. This will be in Sharapova's advantage, who would be able to dictate play easier.
Sharapova reacted to Wozniacki's comments during her post-match interview as well, saying that, "With regards to scheduling, as you know, I don't make the schedule. I'm a pretty big competitor. If you put me out in the parking lot of Queens in New York City, I'm happy to play there. That's not what matters to me. All that matters to me is I'm in the fourth round. Yeah, I'm not sure where she is."
Recently, world number five Caroline Wozniacki drew some attention after questioning why Sharapova, coming back from a ban, has the right to play her matches in Arthur Ashe while she was forced to play on Court 5.
Whereas, Sharapova admitted in her post-match interview that her performance against Kenin was not of the best, but she was glad to be able to get past that match in straight sets.
The Latvian was also confident with herself, thinking that she could replicate her quarterfinal run last year, “Coming back to the US Open, I knew I played well here last year, so I could do it again. That wasn’t a problem, and I wasn’t thinking about points, but every round is tough.”
What Sevastova said was true, having reached seven quarterfinals throughout the year. Starting the year ranked outside the Top 30, the Latvian now finds herself solidly ranked inside the Top 20.
In a recent interview done with the WTA Insider, Sevastova mentioned that she was unconcerned with the number of points she is earning, "I don’t think much about points because I’ve had a pretty good season, and I’m playing pretty solid at every tournament."
Ranking Implications for Sharapova
Meanwhile, Sharapova secured a return into the Top 100 for the first time since her suspension from tennis. The Russian could be the new world number 76 with a win in this match-up and could go as high as 15 with the title.
Ranking Implications for Sevastova
The win for Sevastova will push her into her second consecutive quarter final appearance in New York. It also edges her towards a Top 15 debut, but this has to depend on other players’ results as well. The Latvian is also almost certain of the 11th spot in the Porsche Race to Singapore leaderboard after the fortnight, being in the lead position to qualify for the WTA Elite Trophy.
Head to Head: Anastasija Sevastova 0-0 Maria Sharapova
Surprisingly, this is the first time these players will meet in their careers. Both players have been on the tour for the past decade, but their first meeting will come at such an important moment for both of them.
Facing the in-form Donna Vekic, who ousted 22nd seed Peng Shuai losing just two games in the second round, Sevastova overcame a slow start by winning six of the next seven games to take the first set 6-2, a set which just had two service holds, both of them going to the Latvian.
The second set was much better from the higher-ranked player, sealing her return to the second week with a straightforward victory in just 65 minutes.
Sevastova faced some problems against Kateryna Kozlova in their second round match but prevailed in a break fest against the Ukrainian which featured an incredible 10 breaks of serve. The Latvian was impressive in her returns but she was very inconsistent behind her serves, allowing Kozlova to keep the scores close.
Saving three set points in the opening set against Carina Witthoeft, everything went right from the Latvian as she rattled off 10 of the last 11 games in the match to take the win comfortably, putting in an excellent performance with some well-controlled aggression.
Coming into the US Open as the defending quarterfinalist, Sevastova was burdened with the heavy pressure of defending 430 points, the most she has to defend at a single tournament in her whole career. Fortunately, she was given a manageable draw and she had a decent chance of making her way into the second week for the second year in running.
Let us take a look at Sevastova’s run to the second week:
d. Carina Witthoeft 7-5 6-1 in an hour and 19 minutes
d. Kateryna Kozlova 6-4 6-4 in an hour and 22 minutes
d. Donna Vekic 6-2 6-3 in an hour and five minutes
The five-time Grand Slam champion finally had a straight-sets victory when she beat the teenage Sofia Kenin, who told WTA Insider that Sharapova was her idol from a young age. Despite a straightforward scoreline, the world number 146 put in a disappointing performance and was very erratic throughout the encounter, but still managed to get over the finish line.
Sharapova then recovered from a set down to outgun the dangerous Timea Babos, who put up an inspired performance. The Russian was in deep trouble when she trailed 6-7 2-3 40-AD, with the Hungarian threatening to lead by a set and a break. However, from then on, the former world number one stepped up her level of play and found a way to take the win in three sets, serving an incredible 12 aces along the way.
This encounter was also a rematch of the 2014 Roland Garros final. Returning from an injury layoff, Sharapova showed no signs of the left forearm injury as she powered herself to a confidence-boosting and emotional three-set win over Halep, falling to her knees and shedding some tears after clinching the victory for her first Top 10 win since November 2015. It was also considered by most to be the best match of the tournament, and a possible Match of the Year contender.
Sharapova spent a total of six hours and 46 minutes to get through her first three matches, which were all played at the Arthur Ashe Stadium, the biggest tennis stadium in the world. Once the draw was released, the limelight was all on her blockbuster meeting with the world number two Simona Halep, who also reached the French Open final this year.
Let us take a look at Sharapova’s run to the second week:
d.  Simona Halep 6-4 4-6 6-3 in two hours and 42 minutes
d. Timea Babos 6-7 (4) 6-4 6-1 in two hours and 19 minutes
d. [WC] Sofia Kenin 7-5 6-2 in an hour and 42 minutes
Meanwhile, Anastasija Sevastova had a straightforward run to her second consecutive fourth round appearance at the US Open. The Latvian had a career renaissance when she reached the quarterfinals here in Flushing Meadows to record her best ever performance at a Grand Slam, falling to Caroline Wozniacki in straight sets having just won two games in the process.
Maria Sharapova arguably produced her best performances of her comeback when she stormed to the fourth round here in New York, reaching the second week of a Grand Slam for the first time since the 2016 Australian Open. She had quite a tough path to the fourth round, having endured through two three-set battles in the process. It is also worth noting that this run was possible only because she was given a wild card, something the French Open refused to do.
Maria Sharapova and Anastasija Sevastova would face off in what could be an intriguing clash between two players of completely different playing styles. After six days of intense matches at the Flushing Meadows, both the Russian and the Latvian emerged from the competitive eighth section of the draw to fight for a place in the quarterfinals.
Welcome to the live coverage of the US Open fourth round match between Maria Sharapova and Anastasija Sevastova! My name is Don Han, and I am happy to be bringing you point-by-point coverage of this encounter here on VAVEL. From now until the match begins at an estimated timing of 2 pm ET, news and notes will be above to get you up to speed. Be sure to return at match time for point-by-point updates!