Barty advances to 4th round at Miami by beating Ostapenko

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MIAMI — Top-ranked Ash Barty advanced to the fourth round at the Miami Open by beating Jelena Ostapenko 6-3, 6-2.

Barty had a much easier time than in the previous round, when she saved a match point to beat qualifier Kristina Kucova. That was Barty’s first match away from her native Australian since February 2020.

She kept Ostapenko on the move and on the defensive, pulling her in and moving her from side to side.

Barty is the defending champion as the 2019 winner. The tournament was canceled last year at the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

Her potential path to the final became easier when No. 3-seeded Simona Halep withdrew before her third-round match because of a right shoulder injury.

“I wanted to come here to give my best and play many matches, but unfortunately I can’t,” Halep said in a statement.

Halep earned her 400th career win with a comeback victory over Caroline Garcia in the second round. She had been scheduled to next meet Anastasija Sevastova, who advanced to the fourth round.

Parma Ladies Open semifinals postponed to same day as final

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PARMA, Italy — The semifinals of the Parma Ladies Open have been postponed by a day and will be played shortly before Saturday’s final.

The decision was made because of persistent rain at the clay-court tournament on Friday.

Top-seeded Maria Sakkari will start on center court against Danka Kovinic at 10:30 a.m. local time (0830 GMT) on Saturday before sixth-seeded Ana Bogdan’s match against Mayar Sherif.

The final will be after 6 p.m. local time, shortly after the doubles final – with the doubles semifinals also being played earlier in the day on a different court.

Top-seeded Sakkari reaches semifinals at Parma Ladies Open

Maria Sakkari
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PARMA, Italy — Top-seeded Maria Sakkari rallied past 97th-ranked Maryna Zanevska 2-6, 6-4, 6-4 on Thursday at the Parma Ladies Open to reach her first semifinal since the grass-court season.

Sakkari, who has gone three sets in all three of her matches this week, will face Danka Kovinic for a spot in the final of the clay-court event after Kovinic beat Jasmine Paolini 6-4, 6-4.

In her previous semifinal, Sakkari lost to Belinda Bencic in Berlin in June. The seventh-ranked Greek player was eliminated by Wang Xiyu in the second round of the U.S. Open on Aug. 31.

In the bottom half of the draw, Mayar Sherif of Egypt beat American opponent Lauren Davis 7-6 (2), 6-3 to reach her second career semifinal. Sherif next faces Ana Bogdan, who defeated fellow Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu 6-2, 7-6 (6).