Australian Open: Pliskova wins, to meet Linette for semi-final berth

The former world No 1 from Czech Republic defeated Shuai Zhang 6-0, 6-4 in the fourth round

Karolina Pliskova at the 2023 Australian Open Karolina Pliskova at the 2023 Australian Open Image Credit: AI/Reuters/Panoramic
Australian Open •Round of 16 • completed
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Czech Karolina Pliskova, the No 30 seed, moved into the quarter-final of the Australian Open by defeating Chinese Shuai Zhang, the No 23 seed, 6-0, 6-4 at Melbourne Park on Monday.

Pliskova, who missed last year’s event due to injury, said she was happy to be back in the quarter-finals in Melbourne, her first time since 2019.

“I was feeling quite well since I came actually to Australia. Even in Adelaide I had couple matches, but I thought I was really playing some good tennis,” Pliskova said. ” Of course playing some tough opponents. I didn’t really have that many wins, but I thought the game is actually there. And the timing, sometimes you just feel it. You feel you hitting clean. That’s what was happening for the last, like, two, three weeks.”

“Of course, something different is later in the Grand Slam. The matches, I feel like I’m always a bit more focused on a slam, of course. But lately I think all the matches which I’ve played here. I think the serve was really working for me well in these matches. I think this is so far the best match what I played here definitely, especially the first set.”

“I think she really improved her game a lot” – Pliskova on QF opponent Linette

Pliskova, ranked No 31, will face Pole Magda Linette, who upset fourth seed Caroline Garcia in straight sets in another fourth round clash in Melbourne today.

“i watch(ed) her a little bit this week. But I think she’s really playing good tennis. I don’t want to take it like a good draw, just to go there, Okay, it’s going to be fine, I’m just going to win this match,” Pliskova added. “I played her now, like the last couple months I played her two times. I won really close match in U.S. Open first round, 7-6 in the third. Quite lucky. Then I lost at the Fed Cup. I think she really improved her game a lot. She start to believe. Of course you can see that. She’s a fighter, playing really good game from the baseline. I just can’t give her the time and that game what she wants to play.”

The Czech won against Chinese Xiyu Wang (6-1, 6-3), Kazakh Yulia Putintseva (6-0, 7-5) and Russian Varvara Gracheva (6-4, 6-2) in the previous rounds.

Earlier in the tournament, Zhang, ranked No 22, beat Romanian Patricia Maria Tig (6-1, 4-6, 6-0), Croat Petra Martic (6-3, 6-3) and American qualifier Katie Volynets (6-3, 6-2).

With this, the women’s quarter-final line-up at the Australian Open has been set:

  • [22] Elena Rybakina vs. [17] Jelena Ostapenko
  • [3] Jessica Pegula vs. [24] Victoria Azarenka
  • [30] Karolina Pliskova vs. Magda Linette
  • [5] Aryna Sabalenka vs. Donna Vekic

Australian Open (Grand Slam), other fourth round results (Melbourne Park, hard, USD 24,297,942, most recent results first):

  • Magda Linette beat Caroline Garcia 7-5, 6-4
  • Donna Vekic vs. Linda Fruhvirtova 6-2, 1-6, 6-3
  • Aryna Sabalenka (5) beat Belinda Bencic (12): 7-5, 6-2
  • Victoria Azarenka (24) beat Lin Zhu: 4-6, 6-1, 6-4
  • Jessica Pegula (3) beat Barbora Krejcikova (20): 7-5, 6-2
  • Jelena Ostapenko (17) beat Coco Gauff (7): 7-5, 6-3
  • Elena Rybakina (22) beat Iga Swiatek (1): 6-4, 6-4

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