Ashleigh Barty reached the semi-final of the Mutua Madrid Open with a 6-1 3-6 6-3 victory over Petra Kvitova.
The Australian world number one needed a little under two hours to defeat the number nine seed, and the win takes her into a match-up with Paula Badosa, the last player to have beaten her since February.
The win was her 15th consecutive victory on red clay, and she now has 10 successive wins over top-20 opponents.
Serena v Sharapova, Federer v Ferrer: Tennis’ most surprising head-to-head records
- Evans battles past Millman to set up Zverev clash
- Medvedev tames claycourt demons to advance in Madrid
- Why is clay such a struggle for Medvedev? And can he improve?
"It's just always staying in the fight," she said after the match.
"Always staying in the hunt and never letting it slide away. That certainly doesn't guarantee results, doesn't guarantee success. It guarantees you give yourself the best chance to do what you do and to figure it out and to find your way.
I think it's important not to panic, but everyone emotionally has different ways that they play on the court. I have always been quite calm on the court. That's just always been my demeanour. But for me, it's more about just trusting myself and knowing that we just keep chipping away and trying to find a way - and then give yourself time to do that.
"Petra and I, we respect each other as tennis players," continued Barty. "And I respect her immensely as a person. I love who she is as a person, and on the court it's more than just about the result. I think we love to compete, we love to test each other, we love to test ourselves.
"I think that brings in a really healthy kind of competition and relationship on the court that at the end of the day the result doesn't always matter. I think being able to enjoy it and have a smile on your face is a massive part of why I feel the tennis is always a really good level."
Trailblazers - Serena Williams: 'Stereotypes are meant to be broken'
Kvitova’s inconsistent display in the first set helped Barty to establish her dominance, with 11 unforced errors and two double faults in a row.
She then fought back in the second set and managed to break her opponent as she forced a leveller, but Barty made sure she took control in the third with Kvitova struggling with her forehand.
"I think I started off particularly well, and I think Petra struggled to find the court a little bit," said Barty.
I felt like she gave me a lot of cheapies, particularly in runs of two, three, four in a game. Which is always hard to kind of readjust and tactically keep doing what you're doing, knowing that a lot of the times it was out of my hands.
"I think in the second set Petra served particularly well. I felt like she made a lot more first serves. Even the depth in the box on second serves she was able to get more one-two tennis, kind of what she likes. It was important for me to manufacture a break early in the third, just to break some momentum and try and find my way back in.”
US Open takeaways: Amazing Alcaraz, 'young GOAT' Swiatek, Ruud, Jabeur shine
'Sky’s the limit' - Wilander and McEnroe predict how many Slams Swiatek will win
Share this article