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Krichkova defeats former Australian Open champion Azarenka to reach the quarter-finals

Krichkova defeats former Australian Open champion Azarenka to reach the quarter-finals

Melbourne – Reuters
Fourth seed Barbora Krechkova ousted injured rival Victoria Azarenka to reach the quarter-finals of the Australian Open for the first time on Sunday with a 6-2 6-2 victory over the former world number one.
Azarenka, who won back-to-back titles at Melbourne Park in 2012 and 2013, underwent treatment for a left neck and shoulder injury early in the second set and received some traditional help from her fitness coach after some games.
The French Open champion Krichkova, who had lost their only previous meeting in 2020, was unmoved by the struggles of her 32-year-old opponent and kept her focus to clinch victory at Rod Laver Arena after Azarenka’s blunder into the net.
The Czech has never crossed the second round of the Australian Open, but she is ranked fourth in the tournament this year, after she was outside the top 100 ranked world list until October 2020, before she performed outstandingly and continued to rise and progress.
The winner said after the match, “This is something special and magical. Just two years ago I was out of the top 100. Now I’m here and playing my matches in the biggest stadiums with the champions, and I can actually beat them.”
“I’m just trying to enjoy everything that’s happening on the field,” Krichkova added. “It’s great to say that I’m in the quarter-finals now.”
Azarenka’s defeat means a new Australian Open champion will be crowned this year.
Krichkova will play in the next match against American Madison Keys, who won 6-3 6-1 over Spain’s Paula Padusa earlier on Sunday.

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