Jelena Ostapenko suffered a crushing defeat in front of her home fans at the Baltic Open as Bernarda Pera thrashed her in the first round.

The 2017 French Open champion could not use the support of the fans in Jurmala to her advantage as Pera, coming off a run to the semi-finals at the Ladies Open Lausanne, eased to a 6-2 6-1 win in just 66 minutes.

"I feel great," Pera said. "Every ball, I saw really big, and thank God I got to finish early!"

Speaking later in her post-match media conference, the American added: "I knew I could win this match. I just had to stay focused and stick to my game plan. I felt pretty good from the beginning and I'm happy to get through."

While eighth seed Ostapenko crashed out, top seed and compatriot Anastasija Sevastova had no problems as she hammered Varvara Flink by the same scoreline. Second seed Caroline Garcia battled to a 6-3 6-7 (6-8) 7-6 (8-6) win over Kristyna Pliskova.

There were, however, other shocks on Tuesday as Katerina Siniakova lost to Anhelina Kalinina in three sets while qualifier Nina Stojanovic overcame fourth seed Aliaksandra Sasnovich in a contest that also went the distance.

Wildcard Jana Fett got the better of seventh seed Tatjana Maria across three sets while Valentyna Ivakhnenko carried qualifying momentum into the main draw with a 6-0 6-4 victory over Sorana Cirstea.

Bucharest Open champion Elena Rybakina beat Han Xinyun and runner-up Patricia Maria Tig defeated Ankita Raina, while there were also wins for Paula Ormaechea, Katarzyna Kawa and Chloe Paquet.

At the Palermo Open, world number five Kiki Bertens was emphatic in dispatching Ekaterine Gorgodze 6-0 6-1, while second seed Alize Cornet struggled past wildcard Martina Trevisan 6-7 (5-7) 6-4 6-1.

Third seed Viktoria Kuzmova survived a three-set scare against Elisabetta Cocciaretto and Lausanne champion Fiona Ferro – who beat Cornet in the final – knocked out seventh seed Sara Sorribes Tormo in straight sets.

Jasmine Paolini stunned sixth seed Laura Siegemund 6-1 6-4, Fanny Stollar triumphed over Sara Errani, Jil Teichmann saw off Daria Gavrilova and Irina Camelia-Begu and Anna-Lena Friedsam also earned victories.

Elena Rybakina landed her first WTA title with an emphatic win over Patricia Maria Tig in the Bucharest Open final.

The story of qualifier Tig reaching the final against all expectations had provided the tournament's core narrative but she was swept aside 6-2 6-0 by 20-year-old Rybakina in the final.

Romanian Tig does not have a world ranking and was making her first WTA main draw appearance since 2017 after struggling with multiple injuries as well as giving birth to her daughter in the past year.

The 24-year-old beat three seeded players to reach her first final in four years.

But despite playing in front of a home crowd, she found Kazakhstan's Rybakina too much to handle in the title match, losing in an hour and five minutes.

The unseeded Fiona Ferro took Alize Cornet apart in the final set of an all-French final to win her maiden WTA title at the Ladies Open Lausanne.

Ferro held her nerve in her first singles final to beat the defending champion 6-1 2-6 6-1 on Sunday.

Third seed Cornet won the title when the event was staged in Gstaad last year, but there was to be no repeat as the 98th-ranked Ferro denied her compatriot.

The 22-year-old Ferro lost just six points on serve in the first set and broke twice as Cornet struggled to get going.

Cornet responded well in the second, grasping all three break-point opportunities to level the match, but she was unable to maintain the momentum.

Ferro got on a roll to win five games in a row in her first encounter with Cornet to take the title.

Patricia Maria Tig continued her fairy-tale run at the Bucharest Open by cruising into Sunday's final.

The Romanian qualifier does not have a world ranking and is making her first WTA main draw appearance since 2017 after struggling with multiple injuries as well as giving birth to her daughter in the past year.

And Tig's week to remember at her home tournament went on with an emphatic 6-3 6-1 triumph over sixth seed Laura Siegemund.

Tig has only lost one set all week and saved each of the eight break points she faced against Siegemund, winning in 87 minutes.

"It's very, very special to be in the final in Bucharest," said the emotional victor, who has beaten three seeded players to reach her first final in four years.

Tig, 24, will meet either Elena Rybakina or Martina Di Giuseppe in in the showpiece, the second semi-final having been heavily disrupted by rain.

The final of the Ladies Open Lausanne will see Alize Cornet take on Fiona Ferro in an all-French affair after both players won their last-four matches in straight sets.

Ferro saw off Bernarda Pera 6-1 6-4 in Saturday's opening match to reach a first WTA final, her American opponent failing to register a single break of serve.

Number three seed Cornet, who won the event last year when it was played in Gstaad, then got the better of Tamara Korpatsch 6-3 6-4 in two sets that by contrast produced 11 breaks.

"I think it's going to be hard and beautiful at the same time," Cornet said ahead of the clash with her compatriot. "[Ferro is] the new generation of the French players, and she's such a nice girl.

"She's a bit like my little sister on the tour, and I like her a lot. It's always tough, especially when you play a friend. But in both cases it's going to be beautiful, because either I win or my friend wins."

Tim Henman believes Serena Williams will bounce back from her Wimbledon final defeat to Simona Halep and be in the running for a 24th grand slam title at the US Open.

Williams could offer little resistance to an inspired Halep in the Wimbledon showdown, succumbing to a 6-2 6-2 defeat to the Romanian.

The world number nine was also a beaten finalist at Wimbledon in 2018, before going on to finish as runner up in last year's US Open.

And Henman has no doubt Williams will recover from her defeat to Halep and make it to the latter stages in New York this time around, as she hunts a title which would equal Margaret Court's record haul of 24.

"She's been in three slam finals in the last year so she's still playing at a very high level," Henman told Omnisport.

"It's just a question mark of whether she can equal it and overtake Margaret Court. [The] US Open is not far away and I'm sure she'll be in the mix in New York."

"I was [surprised]," former British number one Henman said when asked about Halep's dominant display against Williams on Centre Court.

"I think when you look at their head to head, they played 10 times and it was 9-1 for Serena coming into that match.

"[Halep] was a huge underdog but the reality of chasing Margaret Court has affected Serena. She didn't play her best tennis and Halep played amazingly well to dominate and win 6-2 6-2."

Halep's win represented her second grand slam triumph, after the 2018 French Open, and Henman has backed the former world number one to step up her level once more now she has another major title to her name.

"She won a slam, she won the French Open before, been number one in the world, she's a great player," Henman said.

"To get that second slam under her belt, I think there's a possibility she could kick on from that."

 

- Tim Henman was talking on behalf of The Open patron HSBC. HSBC are once again offering free golf to children and their friends via the HSBC Hour which are taking place at over 500 clubs in the UK and Ireland. For more information, please visit: https://www.theopen.com/patrons/hsbc

Patricia Maria Tig continued her impressive run at the Bucharest Open on Friday, knocking out Kristyna Pliskova to reach the semi-finals.

Appearing in the main draw of a WTA Tour tournament for the first time since 2017, Romanian Tig continued to enjoy home comforts as she upset her eighth-seeded opponent 6-3 3-6 6-3 after one hour and 49 minutes on court.

Elena Rybakina knocked out second seed Viktoria Kuzmova to also reach the semi-finals, leaving Laura Siegemund - who will face Tig next after defeating Irina-Camelia Begu - as the last seeded player left in contention.

Barbora Krejcikova followed fellow Czech Pliskova in slipping out in the last eight, losing in straight sets to Martina Di Giuseppe in Friday's final match.

At the Ladies Open Lausanne, Alize Cornet rallied impressively from a set down to defeat Natalia Vikhlyantseva and reach the last four.

The third seed - who won the tournament last year when it was held in Gstaad - proclaimed the 4-6 6-1 6-3 victory to be her "best match" of the tournament so far and will next fact Tamara Korpatsch, a winner in three sets against Jil Teichmann, the last remaining Swiss player in the field. 

In the other half of the draw, Fiona Ferro eased past former US Open champion Samantha Stosur, triumphing 6-4 6-2.

Her next opponent will be Bernarda Pera, who came through in a deciding set against Han Xinyun.

Patricia Maria Tig says she is determined to make up for lost time after dethroning Anastasija Sevastova to reach the Bucharest Open quarter-finals on home soil.

Tig is making her first WTA main-draw appearance since 2017 after suffering from injuries and then giving birth to a daughter in the past year.

The 24-year-old qualifier is making her mark in her homeland and took out top seed Sevastova 6-2 7-5 on Thursday, setting up a last-eight encounter with Kristyna Pliskova.

"I missed tennis and now, I'm trying to enjoy every moment of it. I hope more mothers will play, because women need to see that this is not something impossible to do," said Tig.

"I don't feel inferior to any player. I know that if I go on court and give my best, I can win the match too."

Martina Di Giuseppe advanced when Veronika Kudermetova – who had taken the first set 6-2 and was trailing 5-4 in the second – retired, while Aliona Bolsova ended her contest with Barbora Krejcikova at 6-0 3-2 down due to an ankle injury. 

Fourth seed Mihaela Buzarnescu bowed out of the Ladies Open Lausanne with a 1-6 7-6 (7-2) 7-5 defeat at the hands of Fiona Ferro.

Samantha Stosur saw off Allie Kiick 6-3 7-5, while Jil Teichmann and Tamara Korpatsch also advanced to the quarter-finals.

Simona Halep came through a gripping first-set examination to see off China's Zhang Shuai 7-6 (7-4) 6-1 and book a place in the semi-finals of Wimbledon for the first time since 2014.

Halep, the highest-ranked player left in the draw, is chasing a second career grand slam but had to weather a considerable storm against outsider Zhang.

A break down, the world number seven escaped a marathon sixth game to halt Zhang's momentum before stealing the opener on a tie-break.

After those absorbing first 58 minutes, the second set was a more serene affair and Halep will face either Elina Svitolina or Karolina Muchova as she bids to reach a maiden final at the All England Club.

Zhang had never won a main draw match at Wimbledon until this year but, having already seen off seeds Caroline Garcia and Caroline Wozniacki, raced into a 3-0 lead in just over 10 minutes on Number One Court.

A pinpoint backhand into the back-right corner was the jewel in the 30-year-old's early break as her powerful, flat groundstrokes exuded composure and authority.

Halep's forehand was misfiring, and she had to negotiate a considerable crisis at 1-4, scrambling to save four break points and eventually hold.

The high-class and gruelling rallies required to do so appeared to play the 2018 French Open champion into form and Zhang coughed up a break in the next game with a double fault.

The set remained on serve from that point and Halep managed to keep her opponent's relentless attacks at arm's length to take the breaker 7-4.

If the Romanian star had a sense the storm had passed, it was confirmed when Zhang sent a tame forehand into the net to be broken for 3-1.

Halep consolidated with a hold to love and the world number 50 was predictably unable to relocate her sparkling earlier form.

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN
Simona Halep [7] bt. Zhang Shuai 7-6 (7-4) 6-1

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Halep - 17/13
Zhang - 22/29

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Halep - 1/1
Zhang - 1/2

BREAK POINTS WON
Halep - 3/6
Zhang - 1/5

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Halep - 76
Zhang - 71

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Halep - 72/44
Zhang - 67/41

TOTAL POINTS
Halep - 74
Zhang - 61

Cori Gauff's extraordinary Wimbledon adventure came to an end as Simona Halep produced a fine performance in a convincing 6-3 6-3 victory.

After capturing the world of tennis' attention with a shock defeat of five-time Wimbledon champion Venus Williams in round one, Gauff comfortably saw off Magdalena Rybarikova before claiming a spot in the last 16 with a wonderful comeback win over Polona Hercog.

But the 15-year-old could not match former world number one Halep on No.1 Court on Monday, as the 2018 French Open champion eased into the quarter-finals.

Gauff looked set to test Halep when she broke back in the second game, but the Romanian moved in front again in game five before winning against serve to seal the first set.

Halep had victory in her sights when 5-2 up in the second set, only for Gauff - who had to be treated for an apparent abdominal problem during the match - to claw back two match points and hold.

But Gauff's resistance proved futile as Halep converted her next match point - the teenager's tournament coming to a close when she overhit a forehand.

Halep, who made the quarter-finals at Roland Garros this year, will face Zhang Shuai next up.

 

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN
Simona Halep [7] bt Cori Gauff 6-3 6-3

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Halep - 17/14
Gauff - 15/29

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Halep - 2/5
Gauff - 0/1

BREAK POINTS WON
Halep - 5/12
Gauff - 2/6

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Halep - 57
Gauff - 66

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Halep - 76/44
Gauff - 53/38

TOTAL POINTS
Halep - 68
Gauff - 51

World number one Ashleigh Barty was beaten for the first time in two months on Monday as Alison Riske claimed a superb fourth-round victory at Wimbledon.

The American, who had only reached this stage of a grand slam once before in her career, recovered to win 3-6 6-2 6-3 in 97 gruelling minutes on No.2 Court.

Having already beaten seeds Belinda Bencic and Donna Vekic at these championships, Riske will face either Serena Williams or Carla Suarez Navarro in her first major quarter-final.

Barty, who had not even dropped a set since the semi-finals of the French Open last month before this meeting, began with four consecutive aces as she battled to a 4-1 lead, before closing out the opening set as Riske missed a backhand return at the end of another love service game.

The Australian's backhand slice had been causing Riske some problems but she was off balance when her opponent responded with a string of emphatic ground strokes to move 4-1 ahead in the second set.

Riske then levelled the match with a simple passing shot after Barty, who won only two points at the net in set two, failed to do enough with a forehand volley.

A hard-fought third set swung Riske's way when she broke for a 5-3 lead with a fine forehand down the line, and last month's Libema Open champion claimed victory on her first match point as Barty sent a forehand into the tramlines.

"I've just been ready to battle every day I go out there and that's really shown in all my matches. I couldn't be more proud of myself," said Riske.

"I couldn't begin to say what it means to me. To overcome the matches the way that I have ultimately is what I'm most excited about. Being in the last eight at Wimbledon isn't too bad!"

Ashleigh Barty made light work of Harriet Dart as she cruised through to the fourth round at Wimbledon with a comprehensive 6-1 6-1 victory on Centre Court.

The world number one hardly broke sweat against the 22-year-old wildcard, who shocked Beatriz Haddad Maia in round two, easing into the last 16 in 53 minutes.

Barty claimed a 15th successive victory and will meet Alison Riske in round four, after the American knocked out 13th-seed Belinda Bencic.

The Australian wasted little time in the first set, and she was 5-0 up within 20 minutes, having already displayed an impressive array of shots, with a backhand down the line to secure the fifth game a particular standout.

Dart managed to hold her serve to avoid a whitewash, though Barty swiftly regained control in the next game to seal the set.

The French Open champion broke Dart twice as she kept up the pace in the second set and took the first four games.

After holding serve, the Briton looked poised to get one of those back, but failed to take any of four break points in the sixth game, with Barty converting her first match point in the next.

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN
Ashleigh Barty [1] bt Harriet Dart 6-1 6-1

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Barty - 23/6
Dart - 5/18

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Barty - 11/2
Dart - 0/5

BREAK POINTS WON
Barty - 5/5
Dart - 0/4

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Barty - 64
Dart - 57

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Barty - 92/50
Dart - 48/32

TOTAL POINTS
Barty - 56
Dart - 27

Caroline Wozniacki continued her Nature Valley International title defence with a routine victory over Andrea Petkovic at Eastbourne on Tuesday.

Having eased past Kirsten Flipkens in the first round, Wozniacki - whose two career titles on grass have both come at the tournament - overcame Petkovic 6-4 6-4.

Eighth seed Aryna Sabalenka is Wozniacki's next opponent in what is a rematch of the 2018 final.

Wozniacki secured a straight-sets triumph as she cruised towards the title, but Sabalenka avenged that defeat with a win in the pair's most recent meeting in Toronto.

Reigning Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber got the better of Samantha Stosur to clinch her place in the round of 16.

Kerber recorded 15 winners and broke Stosur four times to set up a tie with Rebecca Peterson, who beat Lesia Tsurenko.

Sixth-seed Simona Halep dropped two games against Hsieh Su-Wei, claiming a 6-2 6-0 win in 53 minutes, while Johanna Konta survived a second-set fight back from Maria Sakkari to win 6-4 7-6 (7-4).

Sloane Stephens lost in three sets to Jelena Ostapenko, who will face Ekaterina Alexandrova after her win over Belinda Bencic.

Anastasija Sevastova's bid to reach a fourth consecutive Mallorca Open final fell short as Sofia Kenin prevailed over three sets in the last four.

World number 12 Sevastova won this WTA International tournament two years ago, a victory sandwiched by defeats to Caroline Garcia and Tatjana Maria in 2016 and 2018 respectively.

But her record of reaching every final since the event's inception came to an end on Saturday as Kenin won 6-4 4-6 6-2 to advance to a showdown with Belinda Bencic.

Having broken for a 2-1 lead in the first, Kenin saw three set points go begging on the Sevastova serve at 5-3, but a subsequent hold saw her edge in front before the American again took the early initiative in the second.

Sevastova roared back from 4-2 down, though, reeling off four straight games to force a decider. Kenin swiftly rediscovered her poise and raced 4-0 ahead before securing a place in her third Tour final of 2019.

Awaiting her there is Bencic, who fought back from a set down to defeat reigning Wimbledon champion and top seed Angelique Kerber 2-6 7-6 (7-2) 6-4.

The German eased through the opener thanks to a pair of breaks and, after both women dropped serve in successive games towards the end of the second, Bencic surged clear in the tie-break, winning five straight points from 2-2.

Having rescued three break chances in her first service game of the decider, world number 13 Bencic broke Kerber immediately and that advantage proved enough to see her through to her second final of the year, having triumphed at the Dubai Tennis Championships in February.

French Open champion Ashleigh Barty continued her superb form with a straight-sets win over Donna Vekic at the Birmingham Classic.

Fresh from her win at Roland Garros, second seed Barty had little trouble in adapting from clay to grass as she eased through her first-round match 6-3 6-4 on Wednesday.

Barty did have to get through a wobble early on, but soon got into her stride to dispatch Vekic – a beaten finalist at the Nottingham Open.

The 23-year-old Australian conceded four double faults through the first set, but soon recovered thanks to some unforced Vekic errors.

Barty was tested as she looked to close out the win, as Vekic came up with a series of impressive winners to break serve.

But Barty had the win firmly in her sights, and an exceptional double break set up a match point which she duly converted to earn a second-round tie with Jennifer Brady, who won her contest with Lesia Tsurenko 6-3 6-3.

British number one Johanna Konta, however, did not fare as well – the seventh seed dumped out by Jelena Ostapenko 6-3 6-4 in their second-round clash.

Konta reached the semi-finals in Paris, but 2017 French Open winner Ostapenko was too sharp on the grass court midweek.

Petra Martic will be Ostapenko's opponent in the last eight, where they are joined by Kristyna Pliskova, who beat her twin sister and third seed Karolina 6-2 3-6 7-6 (9-7).

Meanwhile, former world number one Venus Williams enjoyed a winning Birmingham debut as she knocked out Aliaksandra Sasnovich 6-3 6-4 to reach the second round, where she will take on sixth seed Wang Qiang.

Barbora Strycova beat Hsieh Su-wei 7-6 (7-3) 6-3 in Wednesday's other match.

Anastasija Sevastova made light work of Ajla Tomljanovic to set up a Mallorca Open quarter-final against Yafan Wang.

Second-seed Sevastova, Mallorca Open champion in 2017, was in fine form on Wednesday, easily seeing off Tomljanovic 6-2 6-1.

The world number 12 struck nine winners and made just five unforced errors without facing a single break point, such was her superiority, and she improved her career record at the grass-court event to 15 wins from 17 matches.

Tomljanovic looked sharp at times but made 19 unforced errors to allow Sevastova to take control and ease into the final eight.

Wang will be Sevastova's opponent in the next round, after she overcame Alison van Uytvanck in straight sets 7-6(7-3) 6-3.

Meanwhile, 2018 semi-finalist Samantha Stosur bowed out to number four seed Elise Mertens, who won 6-3 6-3.

Mertens will face seventh seed Sofia Kenin in the quarter-finals, who claimed her spot after Ons Jabeur retired during their match while trailing 6-2 2-0.

Top seed and reigning Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber is in action on Thursday, facing Maria Sharapova.

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