TENNIS – Following a first title win of 2021 in Dubai, Muguruza joins Sorribes Tormo in the last 16 of the Miami Open.
Former world No. 1 Garbiñe Muguruza won an eighth straight match in dramatic style at the Miami Open on Sunday.
Coming from a set down, she defeated Anna Kalinskaya, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, in sweltering heat over two hours and 41 minutes.
“These are very tricky rounds where in a big tournament with a big draw that you face players that some of them are unknown,” Muguruza said in her press conference.
“Doesn’t mean they don’t have a great level, and today was proof of that. I felt I didn’t brought my best tennis on court, but I brought my fighting spirit and I could match the level of fighting against Anna, and very happy to go through these tough matches. Doesn’t matter if you play pretty or ugly, but you stay strong and you go through these rounds. That gives me an opportunity to feel better and to have another chance.”
Muguruza is seeded 12 in the tournament and currently playing above that standard.
Muguruza’s maiden tournament
It was in Miami that Muguruza made her maiden WTA draw appearance as a wild card in 2012. She made it to the fourth round that year, but has not made it past the round of 16 since.
“This is totally my breakthrough tournament almost 10 years ago when they gave me a wildcard,” Muguruza recalled. “I actually played well. I beat two top 10 players, and that was a great sign for me that I had the level and I just had to learn many more things and become a better player.”
Sorribes Tormo in last 16
Sara Sorribes Tormo is also having a good tournament and promising start to 2021. Having won the Abierto Zapopan 2021 in Guadalajara, Mexico – her first ever tournament title – Sorribes followed it up with a semi-final appearance at the Abierto GNP Seguros, also in Mexico.
In Miami, Sorribes beat Elena Rybakina 6-1, 3-6, 6-2 to join Muguruza in the last 16. There she meets Ons Jabeur of Morocco.
Jabeur, the 26-year-old from Tunisia, shocked No.4 Sofia Kenin 6-4, 4-6, 6-4, and will be a tough match for Sorribes.
“I know that Sorribes is playing really good lately and she’s been winning a lot of matches,” Jabeur said to the WTA. “She’s a good friend of mine on tour and honestly, I love playing her. I love the way she plays. I have to be ready tomorrow, especially physically and mentally, to win.”
Jabeur has a 4-1 head-to-head advantage at WTA level over Sorribes, having won the past three – 2017 Shenzhen, 2018 Manchester and 2019 Rome – all in straight sets.
However, according to the WTA website, Sorribes is “an iron-willed competitor”, being the only player to win two matches from match-point down this season.
Possible quarter-final match up
Should both the Spanish women win, they would face each other in the quarter-finals.