Charleston native Shelby Rogers had previously won just one main-draw match at her home tournament, but this week the 24-year-old beat qualifier Veronica Cepede Royg in the first round, then outlasted top seed Madison Keys in the second round by serving her breadsticks in the second and third set, and followed it up with a triumph over Japanese Naomi Osaka to make the quarterfinals for the first time in her eight appearances at the Volvo Car Open.
When Rogers famously reached the French Open quarterfinals last year, a 2001 Charleston photo of her as a ballgirl bringing flowers to champion Jennifer Capriati was all over the Internet and now she’s finally enjoying home success for the first time!
The world No.52 Rogers broke Osaka’s serve in the beginning of the third-round match and held on to that advantage all the way to the end of the set. In the second set, Rogers perfectly converted all her three break points, while Osaka used just one of her six opportunities to break Rogers, so the American celebrated 6-4 6-2 and then described how big of a deal the achievement is:
“I remember even just getting to practice on stadium was the coolest thing ever.”
Diadora-clad Rogers will next face Mirjana Lucic-Baroni, whom she describes as the most amazing person off the court.
Did you know? Shelby is also working on her Bachelor of Science in Psychology through Indiana University East’s online degree completion program. She picks courses that directly correlate to her tennis career and daily life, such as learning about human interactions, human biology and nutrition.