(January 23, 2016) Wimbledon finalist Garbine Muguruza became the latest upset victim among the top women’s seeds at the Australian Open on Saturday. The third seed lost 6-3, 6-2 lost to world No. 48 Barbora Strycova.
“Clearly not my best, for sure,” said the Spaniard who made 32 unforced errors in the third round match. “I think today is a very bad day, you know, at the office.”
“I just couldn’t find the court, my shots. Yeah. Didn’t really find my game.”.
For the Czech Strycova, she’s reached the fourth round only once before in her career – when she earned a place in the 2014 Wimbledon quarterfinals.
“I will enjoy myself first because I beat No. 3 in the world,” she said.
“What went well? I think everything. No, I was serving very well, and the plan was like to play my game, mix it a little bit, but to play deep.
“And it’s not easy against Garbine, because she plays fast and also very deep. Today I think she didn’t have the best day and I felt good on court, and that’s why I think I won today. That I felt pretty well in hitting the ball so good.”
Next for the Czech will be two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka, who defeated 18-year-old qualifier Naomi Osaka 6-1, 6-1.
“I will go to that match with confident,” Strycova said. “I don’t know. I have to play my best tennis and to mix it and try to somehow win and focus on every point.
“But Victoria is very, very good. I saw her hitting some balls yesterday and she’s hitting the ball very well. But we don’t know how it goes. She is 1-All in the first set.
“If I play her, I will just enjoy myself and try to do my best and like I did today.”
Azarenka hit 24 winners against Osaka who came into the main draw as a qualifier.
“It wasn’t easy for sure, especially when you don’t know who you play.”
“She’s a little unpredictable and she surprised me with her game.”
The bottom half of the women’s draw has been decimated with upsets leaving No. 7 Angelique Kerber as the highest-ranked player left.
No. 47 Johanna Konta, who upset No. 8 Venus Williams in the first round, continued her run in Melbourne. She became the first British woman to reach the fourth round of the Australian Open since1987, with her 6-2, 6-2 win over Denisa Allertova 6-2, 6-2.
The Sydney-born Konta became a British citizen in 2012. She’ll face No. 21-seeded Ekaterina Makarova who knocked out No. 9 seed Karolina Pliskova 6-3, 6-2 . Makarova reached the semifinals last year.
Konta defeated Makarova in their only meeting last year.
“I mean, again, like I always say, you know, new day, new match,” Konta said. “The only thing I can go into the match with is I know she’s left handed, and I have obviously seen her on the other end of the court.
“But in terms of circumstances and scenarios, we are at a completely different venue, different surface, different time of the year.
“So I’m really just going to focus on, again, things on my end and see where the match takes me.”
On the men’s side Milos Raonic continues to advance under the radar. The Canadian defeated Viktor Troicki 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 to reach the fourth round.
He dedicated his win to the victims of a shooting incident at La Loche Community School in Saskatchewan in which four people were killed.
“Unfortunately in Saskatchewan in a very small community there was a shooting at a high school, so I want to take a moment and give thoughts to that community. Today’s victory was for that community, and a quick recovery and all of Canada, and I’m sure the world is behind you.”
No. 10 seed John Isner pounded 44 aces past 18th seed Feliciano Lopez to avenge a loss to the Spaniard back in 2012, with a 6-7(8), 7-6(5), 6-2, 6-4 win.
“It’s a big win,” Isner said. “It’s a very tough opponent, especially for me, the way he plays. It certainly has given me trouble before in the past.
“Also been a little while since I’ve been in the Round of 16 at this tournament. It feels great. I’m very relieved to get through, want to keep on going.”
The victory puts the American in the round of 16 for just the second time in Melbourne. He also achieved that milestone in 2010.
“I’m proud of the fact that I was able to, especially in the third and fourth sets, play some very good tennis. Really I went out there and I had a game plan and executed it very well in the third and fourth sets.
“Not in the first two sets, which is why I was frustrated out there at times. A lot of things I focused on about this match. I did some of them very well. I’m proud of that. You know, I was very well-prepared, so it’s a good feeling to get through.”
He’ll play No. 8 seed David Ferrer for a chance to reach the quarterfinals.
“My last match in 2015 he beat me, as well, in Paris,” Isner said of Ferrer. I’ve got to play aggressive. I mean, he’s going to want to get on top of that baseline and move me around all day. He’s not going to get tired. We all know that.”