‘It was an extraordinary match,’ says Ash Barty after reaching Stuttgart semi-finals
Ash Barty produced a stunning comeback to reach the semi-finals in Stuttgart and continue her impressive clay form.
The World No 1 showed grit and determination to fight back from a set down against Karolina Pliskova to eventually prevail 2-6 6-1 7-5.
Pliskova got off to a dream start in the first set, breaking the Barty serve on two occasions whilst saving three break points herself to put one foot in the semi-final.
Barty came back immediately in the second set with a break to love, before breaking the Czech on two further occasions to turn the match completely on its head.
In a closely fought decider, Pliskova served for the match at 5-4 before Barty produced consecutive breaks to deny the World No 9.
“It was an incredible match, with two very different opening sets, and the third was extraordinary,” said Barty after her 18th win this year.
“I felt like I created a lot of opportunities and Karolina was able to come up with some quality stuff on some massive points. It was a really good battle.”
With her victory over Pliskova, Barty is now 8-0 in her last eight matches against opponents ranked inside the Top 10, which should put her in good stead against World No 5 Svitolina in the semi-finals.
“I missed some returns, but Karolina is a fierce competitor who has been at the top of her game for a long time,” said Barty.
“I knew I’d have to do something special to claw my way back and get back on my terms.”
“It’s a funny scoring system, you’re never out of it and you just have to keep trying every time you step up to the line to serve or return.”
— wta (@WTA) April 23, 2021
Ash Barty will be determined to win her first WTA title in Stuttgart and become the first Australian to win the singles event.
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