Third seed Garbine Muguruza couldn’t find her rhythm against Barbora Strycova and the Czech recorded an upset victory which took her to the fourth round of the Australian Open for the first time, while Zhang Shuai unbelievably continued to progress, this time stunning Varvara Lepchenko in straight sets.
The world No.48 Strycova capitalized on her outstanding tactical game, forced Muguruza to run, while the Spaniard couldn’t get into the groove with her movement and her game in general. Strycova won the match 6-3 6-2, converting all the four break point chances she earned, while Muguruza made use of just one of five. At game, set, match, Strycova stayed collected and peacefully lifted her left hand.
Strycova will face two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka in the fourth round. The Belarusian has a 4-0 head-to-head record against Strycova and on top of that, she hasn’t lost a set ever since coming to Australia in December. But Strycova is smart and is not being stressing about her upcoming match earlier than necessary: “I will enjoy myself first, because I just beat the No.3 in the world.”
Unbelievably, Zhang Shuai is not stopping! The Chinese had never before in her long career won a single Grand Slam match in the main draw and now she’s made the fourth round of the Australian Open, without dropping a set! On Saturday, Zhang upset the world No.51 Lepchenko, losing just four games to the American, 6-1 6-3.
Zhang is currently ranked 133rd, but will now crack the Top 100. More precisely, she’s projected to rise to No.95. And that’s not all. If she wins her upcoming encounter with Madison Keys, Zhang will even become China’s No.1 player, overcoming Zheng Saisai.