Hampton Sets Up Radwanska Rematch
Published July 26, 2013 12:00
The No.4-seeded Hampton was strong on serve - she won eight of her nine service games, and didn't face any break points in the eight she won, and was strong on the return too - she broke Dushevina's serve four times. In the end she was just too solid for the Russian qualifier, prevailing, 64 63.
"I definitely felt better about my game today," Hampton said. "The ball's coming off nicely, much, much cleaner, and I served better too. It's not where I'd like to be, but it's certainly an improvement."
The last two months have been a whirlwind for Hampton. Ranked No.68 the week before the French Open, she has now reached three Premier-level semifinals - Brussels that week, Eastbourne, and now Stanford - and her first Grand Slam second week at Roland Garros. She's ranked No.29 now.
Awaiting Hampton in the semis is No.1 seed Agnieszka Radwanska, who won a thriller against No.6 seed Varvara Lepchenko in the night match, surviving a flurry of forehand winners and twice coming back from a break down in the third set to prevail in a two-hour, 14-minute nail-biter, 76(2) 36 63.
"This is my first tournament back on hardcourts so I'm struggling with a few things," Radwanska said afterwards. "I wasn't feeling the ball at all. I really wanted to win that match, and I'm happy I did, but I still went out and practiced a little bit afterwards because I really didn't play my best tennis tonight.
"It was a weird match. There were a lot of ups and downs for both of us. But I fought until the end."
The match numbers were Lepchenko-heavy, though Radwanska's numbers were a bit cleaner - the American hit 37 winners to 51 unforced errors (-14), the Pole 16 winners to just 24 unforced errors (-8).
Lepchenko can take solace in the fact that she actually won one more point in the match - 96 to 95.
Radwanska leads Hampton in their head-to-head series, 4-1, but there's a big asterisk there - after losing their first four meetings, Hampton actually won the pair's last meeting in the first round of Eastbourne about a month ago, qualifying and then upsetting the World No.4 in her opener, 76(2) 62.
"It wasn't just the last match that was tough, a lot of the matches I won against her were long and tough as well," Radwanska said. "In Eastbourne she was playing really good tennis. I wasn't even playing badly - I was playing well. In the important moments she was just playing unbelievable there.
"What happened tonight is in the past now - tomorrow is a new day, and a new match."
"That morning in Eastbourne, I woke up feeling very confident about how I was playing," Hampton said.