Serena Williams upset by Rogers in exhausting quarterfinal at Top Seed Open
In a match postponed by a lengthy rain delay, World No.9 Serena Williams suffered defeat at the hands of countrywoman Shelby Rogers at the Top Seed Open.
Serena had battled past sister Venus Williams in the second round, and looked set to dispatch of her quarterfinal opponent. Rogers, ranked No.116 in the world, had never faced Williams on the WTA circuit. However, she surprised the former World No.1 with some consistent hitting and placement to prevail 1-6 6-4 7-6(5).
Williams took the first set with relative ease, imposing her will on her unseeded opponent. However, Rogers was able to hold her nerve in the second set, with no breaks being exchanged until Williams served to stay in the set at 4-5. It was at this point that Rogers displayed incredible poise, forcing errors from Williams to claim the second set.
Neither woman gave an inch in the final set, as Rogers refused to back down. As the third set drew on, Williams began to show signs of fatigue, stopping to catch her breath on several occasions. This did not go unnoticed by Rogers, who employed the drop shot several times with moderate success. Nonetheless, the final set came down to a tiebreak, during which Williams obtained a mini-break. However, Rogers displayed some incredible defensive prowess that kept her in the game, forcing Williams to commit errors. With two match points at 6-4, Rogers was able to capitalize on the second. The sparse crowd was stunned into silence as Williams shot went long and Rogers claimed the victory after two hours.