Lspaola Paula Badosa was on the ropes this Wednesday against the American Elisabeth Mandlikbut managed to come back from a breakdown in the deciding set and win the tie-break, for qualify for the quarter-finals of the San José tournament (California, USA). Badosa’s cry of release when he saw the end of Mandlik’s forehand best sums up his first on the San Jose cement, where he triumphed by 6-2, 5-7 and 7-6 (5) after two hours and 32 minutes of the fight.
the spanish playerworld number 4, I came back to competition after losing against the Romanian Simona Halep in the round of 16 at Wimbledon and, although he did not play his best tennis, he managed to extend his California run. A very difficult quarter-final awaits him since it will be Friday against the winner of the duel between the Japanese Naomi Osaka and American Coco Gauff.
And that Badosa, despite losing serve in the opening game, deteriorated the game with a forceful reaction that led him to victory in the first partial by 6-2 in 37 minutes. The Spaniard had three break chances at 2-1 in the second set but failed to convert any of them and was broken in the following game.
Although he got it back immediately, he paid another break, at 5-5, which Mandlik took advantage of to equalize and force the third set. That’s when Badosa was on the ropes. He had to subtract with a 5-4 and an opposing 6-5, but was able to take advantage of the indecision of his young rival to force the tiebreaker. I need character, calm and lucidity to prevail over a Mandlik who held until 4-3 in her favor, before committing a few errors which cost her the game.
Badosa eventually managed to win the tiebreaker 7-5 and can continue to fight for a tournament that has only been won once by Spanish players. It was directed by Arantxa Sánchez Vicario in 1994. Despite the loss, Mandlik left the track cheered by the fans, after a top performance at 21. Number 240 in the world rankings, Mandlik entered the main draw after overcoming two qualifying rounds, against the Mexican Fernanda Contreras and the Swiss Jil Teichmann, and gave the big surprise against the American Alison Riske, number 33, in the previous round.
The Florida-born player has a family of great athletes. His mother is Hana Mandlikova, who won two Australian Opens, in 1980 and 1987; Roland Garros 1981 and US Open 1985. His father, Vilem Mandlik, was the best Czech athlete between 1955 and 1965 and competed in two editions of the Olympic Games, Melbourne 1956 and Rome 1960. He also competed in two editions of the European Championships, finishing fourth in the 200 meters in 1958. With her victory, Badosa is the first Spaniard to reach the quarter-finals of this tournament since Carla Surez did so in 2019.
It was the day by the way comeback of Ons Jabeur after losing Wimbledon final to Kazakh Elena Rybakina. The Tunisian took an hour and 18 minutes to beat American Madison Keys 7-5, 6-1. In the quarterfinals, she will face American Claire Liu and Russian Veronika Kudermetova. 6, 7-5 and 6-1.