Zhang's 300th Win A Thriller

Zhang Shuai got past Petra Kvitova in a see-saw affair to advance to the third round in Rome. Though it was a huge win for her, she has had one that was bigger.

Published May 13, 2014 12:13

Zhang's 300th Win A Thriller
Zhang Shuai

ROME, Italy - A back-and-forth battle on Tuesday saw Zhang Shuai edge fifth-seeded Petra Kvitova for her 300th professional win and the biggest upset of the Internazionali BNL d'Italia so far.

Watch highlights, interviews and more video from Rome right here on wtatennis.com!

The Plot
Zhang snapped a four-match losing streak by beating Lauren Davis in straight sets in the first round here on Monday, while World No.6 Kvitova had a bye and was coming off a semifinal showing last week in Madrid.

The Turning Point
It looked like a smooth ride into the third round for Kvitova when she went up 4-0 in the first set, but Zhang promptly reeled off five consecutive games. The set was eventually settled in a tie-break, where down two set points at 6-4, Zhang won four straight points to go up a set.

The Chinese 25-year-old continued that momentum into a 5-3 second set lead, but then it was Kvitova's turn to rally, and the Czech captured four straight games to force a decider.

Like the entire match, the third set was up and down, with Zhang winning the first three games, losing the next three and then winning three in a row once again for a 7-6(6), 5-7, 6-3 triumph that lasted two hours and 35 minutes.

By The Numbers
The third set saw Zhang convert on all four of her break point opportunities and win 14 of 18 points on Kvitova's usually dangerous first serve, while Kvitova won just five of 14 points on Zhang's first serve. Zhang's only Top 30 win before Tuesday came over World No.1 Dinara Safina at Beijing in 2009, so now she has two Top 10 wins to her credit.

"When I came from hardcourts a few weeks ago, I really didn't feel comfortable on clay but have been working hard on it the past few weeks," Zhang said. "Petra played amazing. Whenever I played well, she would raise her level. I had chances to win the match in the second set but she kept hitting winners. There's a lot I can learn from her. I'm a bit lucky to win the match, but it's a really good win for me and gives me so much confidence. I'm so happy."

What's Next
Zhang plays the winner of Camila Giorgi and Christina McHale, neither of whom she has played before.

Share this page!

Related news

  • Upsets Of 2015: Bencic Vs Serena

    November 26, 2015
    The fourth installment in wtatennis.com's upset week shines a light on Belinda Bencic's stunning defeat of Serena Williams on a balmy Toronto evening.
  • 50 Most Popular Players Of 2015: 20-11

    November 26, 2015
    Grand Slam champions, former No.1s, future No.1s - we're getting down to the biggest names on the 50 Most Popular Players Of 2015 countdown. Where's your fave?
  • Ivanovic Processes Steady Season

    November 26, 2015
    Former No.1 Ana Ivanovic enjoyed her best Grand Slam finish since winning the 2008 French Open this year; where does the Serb go from here?
To The Top