Quarterfinal pairs are all set now at the 2021 Australian Open, as Ashleigh Barty, Karolina Muchova, Jessica Pegula and Jennifer Brady wrapped up fourth-round action on Monday.
Top seed Ashleigh Barty made short work of Shelby Rogers 6-3 6-4 to advance to her third straight Australian Open quarterfinal. The home favorite’s opponent in the final eight will be Karolina Muchova, as the Czech recovered from a shaky start to overcome Elise Mertens 7-6(5) 7-5.
The other quarterfinal in the top half of the draw will feature long-time friends Jessica Pegula and Jennifer Brady.
World No.61 Jessica Pegula stunned fifth seed Elina Svitolina 6-4 3-6 6-3 to record her first win over a Top 10 opponent in seven tries and reach a Grand Slam quarterfinal for the first time. Pegula entered this Australian Open with a total of three match wins at a major, while she has now won four matches at the prestigious tournament over the past week, including victories over singles and doubles Grand Slam champions Victoria Azarenka, Samantha Stosur and Kristina Mladenovic.
Seed No.22 Jennifer Brady advanced to her first Australian Open quarterfinal with a 6-1 7-5 win over No.28 seed Donna Vekic. As ESPN reports, just one of 55 singles players who endured hard quarantine made it into the fourth round and that one player is Brady, who has now progressed further. Here’s how the American commented on her tournament preparation being limited by the lockdown:
A lot of people were complaining, and I told myself I wasn’t going to complain. I mean, there’s way worse things going on in the world than me being stuck in a hotel room for 14 days.
Quarterfinal pairs in the bottom half of the draw were determined on Sunday: Serena Williams vs. Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka vs. Hsieh Su-Wei.