Elena Vesnina is the first player to advance to the semi-finals of the Moorilla Hobart International after defeating Australian wildcard Jarmila Gajdosova in straight sets 6-3 6-2 this morning.
Vesnina was delighted with the win, which sees her book a place in the semi-final against either No.8 seed Sloane Stephens or qualifier Lauren Davis.
“I’m happy that I won that match,” she said.
“I know that Jarmila is a very tough player, she’s a fighter and can come back from any score so I’m happy that I won it in two sets. I was expecting it to be a very long and tough match.”
Gajdosova was living dangerously early, facing break points in each of her first three service games. In her second service game she was able to save break point and hold serve with a couple of characteristic forehand winners. But it wasn’t long before Vesnina capitalised on the opportunities handed to her, taking the break in the fifth game, before consolidating on serve to lead 4-2. Vesnina’s serve was prolific, not giving up a single break point in the opening set as she took it 6-3.
Gajdosova’s first break point opportunity did not come until the third game of the second set. But again Vesnina kept her composure, serving a big ace to save break point before going on to hold serve and close out the match, taking the second set 6-2. Vesnina’s serve was indeed the difference in today’s match, the former world No.22 winning 66% of points on serve.
“I think I was serving pretty good today,” said the 26-year-old Russian.
“I was doing pretty well on my serve, especially on the break points.”
Gajdosova was disappointed with the loss, but took a lot away from her week here in Hobart.
“I thought it was a pretty positive step forward, I won two matches against two good players so it’s a pretty good start considering I haven’t won a match since the middle of last year and I haven’t played since September.”
Her attention now turns towards the Australian Open.
“I think I’m getting better by the match and hopefully it’s going to be good enough for the Australian Open.”
Vesnina on the other hand will be looking to take her first WTA singles title here in Hobart this week.
“I’m getting closer, definitely, I’m in the semi-final but now I’m only thinking about the next match.”
By Nick Cuthbertson.