06/04/2013 – The title holder Timea Babos (ranked 123rd) lost in the quarter-final of the Monterrey Open (235 000 USD) against Monica Niculescu.
The Mexican quarter-final took 1 hour 39 minutes. In doubles Timi got into the top four with Kimiko Date-Krumm after they won in three sets in 1 hour 19 minutes against Gabriela Dabrowski and Alla Kudryavtseva.
|MONTERREY OPEN (235 000 USD, HARD COURT), SINGLES, QUARTER-FINAL|
|Monica Niculescu (Romanian)-Timea Babos (Hungarian) 7:5, 6:2|
|MONTERREY OPEN (235 000 USD, HARD COURT), DOUBLES, QUARTER-FINAL|
|Timea Babos, Kimiko Date-Krumm (Hungarian, Japanese, 1)-Gabriela Dabrowski, Alla Kudryavtseva (Canadian, Russian) 4:6, 6:3, 10-6|
Niculescu celebrated a number of good results in the 2013 season. She was a semi-finalist in Shenzhen, good wins including elimination of Laura Robson. In Hobart she reached the top eight after beating Mandy Minella and Shuai Peng. In Doha in the first round Niculescu had surpassed the former world number one Jelena Jankovic. In Florianopolis in the quarterfinals the Romanian beat Timi 6:3, 6:2 and did not stop until the final success. She hasn’t been so successful since the Brazilian tournament: she lost in the second round in Indian Wells against Kirsten Flipkens and defeated in the first round in Miami by Jamie Hampton.
The world No 51 Niculescu started very well in the Monterrey quarterfinal: unfortunately, immediately took Timi’s serve, not lost a rally and then hold her service to 15. But the defending champion then smoothly won the next game and after that easily broke the Romanian player.
Timi was easily hold her service game after 2:2, she led 3:2.
It does not bother the more experienced Niculescu, who won the next three games, broke her rival to 15. The 19-year-old Hungarian player hold her next service game and then equalized after won the third break point (5:5).
Unfortunately, in the next game Niculescu again took her opponent’s serve, after Timi led 40-15… Then the Romanian tennis player subsequently hold the next game to 0, which decided the 48-minute first act.
Niculescu had nurtured his right hand before the second set, but was able to continue the meeting. The Romanian player then had three times break points, but Timi saved each time. Finally, the defending champions won this game. Then the Romanian player hold her service from 0-30 and Timi again took the lead after saving another break point.
Niculescu again equalized to 30 (2:2), then broke Timi to 15 thanks to a double fault … The Romanian offensive-minded, very ancient style gradually “taking apart” the defending champions game, she utterly decided the quarter-final with another break at 4:2. This time Timi had made much more mistakes, so she finished the singles campaign in Mexico.
In doubles Timi and Kimiko started badly in the first set, they lost the service game at 1:1. The opponent served very well for a long time, but Dabrowski finally made mistakes, and the first seeds equalized. In the ninth game the Hungarian-Japanese double again lost the serve from 40-15 and in the next game they couldn’t break Kudryavtseva from 40-30.
After the 35-minute first act, the first four game came with breaks, then Timi finally hold her serve. Then the first seeds again broke the Russian player (4:2). After 5:3 the young Hungarian holds her serve, which finished the extremely undulating, 34-minute second act.
In the all-important tie-break the Hungarian-Japanese duo won six balls in series after 1-2 and led 7-2. The next point was the opponent’s but then came the Hungarian-Japanese pair. After 9-3 the rival saved three match points, but the fourth was decisive.
In the last four Timi and Kimiko will meet the American Asia Muhammed (140) and Allie Will (268).