BOGOTA, Colombia - No.5 seed Tamara Zidansek put on a clay court masterclass at the Claro Open Colsanitas in Bogota on Thursday, dropping just two games against Sachia Vickery, 6-2, 6-0, to reach her second WTA quarterfinal of 2019.
“Today I think I prepared myself really well for the match, and it showed on the court,” Zidansek said after the match. “I think I played well and managed to do everything I intended to do.
“The conditions were pretty good. The courts were actually quite dry considering it’s been raining all week. Because of the altitude of course the balls are flying, but we’re used to this now.”
Zidansek came into the match riding high after a first-round comeback win, turning around a set deficit to defeat Irina Khromacheva, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4. The 21-year-old Slovenian is a rising force on clay: last year she collected four titles on the surface and 43 match wins across all levels.
Zidansek’s prowess on this surface was on full display against Vickery, especially in the early exchanges. The Slovenian player got ahead an early break to open with a 2-0 lead and had points to make it 3-0 as Vickery struggled to find her feet. The American eventually fought off all six break points to hold for 2-1
Vickery’s frustrations grew as she saw two break points of her own come and go a few games later, but Zidansek’s smart play saw her hold at 4-2. Those would be the only two break points that the American would have in the entire set as Zidansek broke once more at 5-2 and served out the set with confidence.
A spate of zinging inside-out forehands gave Zidansek another early break in the second set at 1-0. With her lead in the bag, Zidansek never looked back: she reeled off the next five games in a row in methodical fashion, breaking two more times to take the match in straight sets after almost exactly an hour on court, 6-2, 6-0.
Up next, Zidansek will take on former Bogota champion Lara Arruabarrena, the No.11 seed, in the quarterfinals. Arruabarrena defeated Italian qualifier Jasmine Paolini in two sets to advance.
“I’ve never played against her, honestly I haven’t watched her play,” Zidansek admitted. “So my coach and I will talk about tactics, and try to do the best that we can to prepare.
“Before every match we try to see what the opponent does well, what she doesn’t do quite as good. But in general, I just try to play my game. And hopefully that comes out as the winning thing.”