Makarova wields Melbourne magic with Kerber win

MELBOURNE – Ekaterina Makarova sprung a second successive fourth round upset at the Australian Open when the Russian completed a 7-5 6-4 victory over fifth seed Angelique Kerber on Sunday.

The 19th seed started brightly and survived a wobble to close out the first set before going on to defeat her injury-hampered German opponent, the highest seed so far to lose in the women’s draw, in one hour and 32 minutes with an ace.

Makarova advanced to her second consecutive quarter-final at Melbourne Park after matching her run at last year’s tournament when she sensationally defeated five-time champion Serena Williams, who was also hindered by injury.

“It’s an unbelievable feeling,” the 24-year-old Muscovite said in a courtside interview at a sunbathed Rod Laver Arena.

“I really like to play here, everything is so perfect. My team did a really nice job.”

Wimbledon semi-finalist Kerber received treatment on and off the court for a back complaint, which she said had affected her for two or three days.

“I was thinking it will be maybe not too bad, but in the first set I was feeling that and it was actually worse and worse,” added the 25-year-old, who had felt the most pain during her serve.

Makarova will now meet second seeded compatriot Maria Sharapova, who ended her run 12 months ago.

After eliminating Williams as a 56th-ranked outsider, lefthander Makarova crumbled against Sharapova in the following match last year, managing only five games.

“I think it will be really interesting and I really want to play against her,” Makarova said.

“Last year I was so surprised … and had so many thoughts on my mind. This year, I’m a little bit used to it. I think I’ll be ready to play a good game.”

(Editing by Patrick Johnston)

Read more :
  • Jordan reject laser claim at Japan match
    Jordan on Wednesday denied accusations that lasers were shone in Japanese players' faces during their 2-1 World Cup qualifier loss to the kingdom, saying the claims seek to justify their lo...
  • 2014 World Cup Qualifying: Pedro strikes as Spain beat France
    World champions Spain retook control of 2014 World Cup qualifying Group I on Tuesday with a 1-0 win over France, Pedro Rodriguez scoring the only goal of the game in the second half at the ...
  • Europa League: Tottenham survive Inter scare as Torres saves Chelsea
    Tottenham suffered a fright before sneaking past Inter Milan on Thursday to reach the Europa League quarter-finals as they, Chelsea and Newcastle restored national pride following England's...
  • Dr T Ao Football Tournament: Meghalaya rout Nagaland, Arunachal stun Assam
    Hosts Meghalaya won their second consecutive match in group A of the fourth Dr T Ao memorial football tournament beating Nagaland 4-0 at the JN Stadium, here on Wednesday. In another match ...
  • Italy attack-minded for Malta match
    Fresh off a rousing comeback against Brazil in a friendly, Cesare Prandelli's Italy side face a trip to Malta on Tuesday as they look to extend their lead over Bulgaria in Group B and move ...
  • Barcelona need to maintain aggression: Jordi Alba
    Barcelona must try to maintain the level of performance that they showed in dismantling AC Milan 4-0 for the rest of the season, defender Jordi Alba said on Friday. Alba rounded off a wond...
  • John Isner wants Serena Williams partnership
    American tennis star John Isner has targeted a mixed doubles partnership with Serena Williams at the London Olympics. The 26-year old, who replaced Mardy Fish as the American number one af...
  • Rebuilding
    Raffy Ledesma The Boston Celtics era of the “Big Three” is officially over.  It was reported yesterday that the Celtics are trading their core veterans Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett to the...