ROME, Italy – No.3 seed Garbiñe Muguruza weathered a high-octane assault from Jelena Ostapenko to come back from a set down and move into the third round at the Internazionali BNL d’Italia, 2-6, 6-2, 6-1.
There were plenty of distractions at Court Centrale – the Coppa Italia final was being played at nearby Stadio Olimpico and the Foro Italico was buzzing with fireworks and helicopters flying overhead – but Muguruza stayed focused to put together her first win on red clay since 2016 Roland Garros.
The 19-year-old Latvian made Muguruza work for every point, especially as she dominated in the opening set. Muguruza just couldn’t manage to hold on to her serve as Ostapenko’s big returns kept her under pressure and her first serves abandoned her. Despite getting two breaks on the Ostapenko delivery, she herself was broken four times and struck 17 unforced errors as Ostapenko quickly wrapped up the first set.
But Ostapenko, who was hitting winners from every angle in the first, just couldn’t keep up the blistering form into the second, and Muguruza pounced on the letdown. The Spaniard broke twice with a flurry of forehand winners and dodged three break points to level the match and force a decider.
Muguruza kept the momentum in the third, taking advantage of Ostapenko’s service woes to pounce on the weaker second delivery. She charged ahead 4-0 by the time the Latvian could get on the scoreboard, and calmly reeled off another two games to secure her spot into the round of 16 after an hour and 46 minutes.
She’ll take on Julia Goerges for a spot in the quarterfinals after the German advanced in a 2-6, 7-6(2), 6-1 thriller against Jelena Jankovic earlier in the day.