13/03/2018 – The Hungarian-French team came back from a break down in the first set.
|BNP PARIBAS OPEN (8 648 508 USD, HARD COURT), DOUBLES, QUARTER-FINAL|
|Tímea Babos, Kristina Mladenovic (Hungarian, French, 4th)-Monica Niculescu, Andrea Sestini Hlaváčková (Romanian, Czech, 5) 6:4, 6:3|
The match lasted 1 hour 18 minutes in Indian Wells.
“Of course this was not a simple match either. The opponent started very aggressively and they played well. We began a bit slowly. There were a lot of close games, but We were the better team, all the time. That’s why We were able to win the first set. Afterwards, We played better and better. Obviously I’m happy. It’s never been easy to play against a former partner. We met a good pair: We won in two sets, this is the most important. On Wednesday, I will practice on the court and I will have a work-out in the gym, I’m preparing for the singles and the doubles, too. So the day off is combined. We will only be on the court on Thursday. Fortunately, my left foot is in better shape. Look forward to the next match! I’m happy to keep improving our game, that’s the most important” – said Timi.
Timi – and Kristina Mladenovic – met for the second time this year with the Czech player who first appeared in a joint competition with her new partner, Romanian Monica Niculescu. The Hungarian-French double in January’s Australian Open won a great battle against Andrea Hlaváčková Sestini and Taiwan’s Latisha Chan.
The first 43-minute set brought a huge battle at Indian Wells. The Czech-Romanian pair broke the opponent to 40 after 1:1, then they lost their own game, to 40. At 4:3, Timi and Mladenovic had two break point, but this time without success.
The ninth game was crucial. The 4th seed pair saved their serves from 30-40, it was very important. Because in the next game, Timi and Kiki reached three set points as a receiver’s, and they lived with the last chance.
The second set was more simple. Timi and Mladenovic broke the opponent to 15, after 3:2. In the sixth game, the Czech-Romanian team broke back, but then they could hold their serve. The Hungarian-French pair won the next two games – for the first time as a receiver – to 30, reaching the semifinal.
In Thursday’s semifinal Timi and Mladenovic will meet the first seeded pair of Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina.
Makarova (born: 7 June, 1988) is 3rd in the world rankings, and ranked 3rd (first on 8 June, 2015) as her career best position. So far she has won 12 WTA and 9 ITF competitions. On the side of Vesnina she remained unbeaten in 2013 at the Roland Garros, in 2014 at the US Open and 2017 in Wimbledon, and also was finalist in 2014 at the Australian Open, in 2015 in Wimbledon and in 2016 at Roland Garros. In 2016, the Russian double won the Rio Olympics and the WTA Finals in Singapore.
Vesnina (born: 1 August, 1986) is third in the world rankings, and her career best position is also 3rd (first time: 17 February 2014). So far, she has won 17 WTA and 6 ITFs in this genre.
In the final of this year’s Australian Open the Hungarian-French pair won 6:3, 6:4 against the Russians.