Saturday, September 1, 2018

"She hits like a ghoul"--new Louis Armstrong Stadium = new graveyard court

Kaia Kanepi. Lesia Tsurenko. Karolina Muchova. Marketa Vondrousova. Dominika Cibulkova. Aryna Sabalenka. They all played in the new Louis Armstrong Stadium, and they all upset major opponents.

We're just three rounds in at the U.S. Open, but the carnage in the new stadium has already earned it the "graveyard court" distinction. The above players' victims, repectively, were: number 1 seed Simona Halep, number 2 seed Caroline Wozniacki, 12th seed and two-time major champion Garbine Muguruza, 13th seed and red-hot player Kiki Bertens, 2016 champion (and 2018 Wimbledon champion) and 4th seed Angie Kerber, and 5th seed Petra Kvitova.

Both Kanepi and Tsurenko accomplished their big feats early in the tournament, and they're both still around. Kanepi went on to defeat qalifier Jill Teichmann and up-and-coming player Rebecca Peterson, and Tsurenko went on to defeat Katerina Siniakova.

Today, 6th seed Caroline Garcia was shown the exit by 30th seed Carla Suarez Navarro, a less-shaky Maria Sharapova took out a (still) wildly undisciplined Alona Ostapenko, Naomi Osaka double-bageled Aliaksandra Sasnovich, and Madison Keys needed three sets to vanquish Aleks Krunic. Bertens, Kerber and Kvitova all went out today, also.

Here is the round of 16 singles draw:

Kaia Kanepi vs. Serena Williams (17)
Ash Barty (18) vs. Karolina Pliskova (8)
Sloane Stephens (3) vs. Elise Mertens (15)
Anastasija Sevastova (19) vs. Elina Svitolina (7)
Carla Suarez Navarro (30) vs. Maria Sharapova (22)
Madison Keys (14) vs. Dominika Cibulkova (29)
Aryna Sabalenka (26) vs. Naomi Osaka (20)
Marketa Vondrousova vs. Lesia Tsurenko

There are three former champions left in the draw, as well as two former runners-up.  The draw includes three players from the USA, two from the Czech Republic and two from Ukraine.

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