Coco GAUFF glides past ZHENG Qinwen in Rome Open thriller

Wednesday, 15 May 2024 at 00:02
Coco Gauff (No. 3) battled past Qinwen Zheng (No. 7) with a 7-6(4), 6-1 victory, securing her spot in the semifinals of the Rome Open. The American reaches the last 4 of a WTA 1000 event for the 6th time in her career. She now faces world No. 1 Iga Swiatek, who notably defeated her in the semifinals of the tournament in 2021.
The first set was a true battle with long rallies. Both players held their serves in tightly contested games without any break points, with Zheng constantly challenging Gauff's backhand, while the American prevailed whenever she could comfortably strike her drive.
With the score at 4-3 in favor of Gauff, the American applied pressure on her opponent's second serve and secured a crucial break, allowing her to serve for the set. However, Zheng didn't give up, and under pressure, Gauff conceded the break with a double fault, bringing the score back to level terms.
The set extended to a tie-break, where the 2023 US Open champion kept her composure after making a couple of errors and ultimately won the set 7-6(4) after an hour and 12 minutes.
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Coco Gauff completed her 200th career triumph
The second set began in favor of the world No. 3, who quickly secured a break in the opening game. Coco maintained her strong serving as in the previous set, while Zheng considerably loosened her serve, managing only a 33% first-serve percentage.
The latter part of the set became routine for Gauff, who easily secured her second break in the fifth game and ultimately sealed the victory in her favor with a score of 7-6(4), 6-1 in an hour and 50 minutes.
In the semifinals, she will face world No. 1 Iga Swiatek, who is currently on a streak of 10 consecutive wins after clinching the title at the Madrid Open. The Polish player comfortably defeated Madison Keys 6-1, 6-3 and aims to secure her spot in her 12th WTA final.

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