MELBOURNE — World number one Iga Swiatek crashed out of the Australian Open on Sunday with a 6-4 6-4 defeat by Wimbledon champion Elena Rybakina on Rod Laver Arena.
Kazakhstan’s Ms. Rybakina advanced to the quarter-finals of the season’s opening Grand Slam for the first time with an impressive display against the misfiring Pole.
Ms. Rybakina, seeded 22nd, will face Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko in the quarter-finals. Jelena Ostapenko stunned Coco Gauff 7-5 6-3 to reach the quarter-finals of the Australian Open on Sunday after putting on a power-hitting clinic.
Latvian Ms. Ostapenko has struggled to reach the heights of her French Open-winning days but the 17th seed simply overpowered the American at Margaret Court Arena.
Ms. Swiatek, the reigning French Open and US Open champion, got off to a rough start, surrendering her opening service game after receiving a warning from the chair umpire over the time she took for her pre-match preparations.
She fought back to level the scores by the fourth game but Ms. Rybakina would break again, clinically punishing the Pole’s second serve to take the opening set.
Ms. Swiatek looked to have recovered after she rattled off three straight games at the start of the second set behind a more aggressive forehand, only for Ms. Rybakina to haul herself level with another break of serve.
The Russia-born right-hander broke Ms. Swiatek again at 4-4 in the second set before holding her own serve in convincing fashion to close out the match.
Ms. Rybakina’s win sees her progress to a third Grand Slam quarter-final having also reached the last eight at the 2021 French Open before winning Wimbledon last year. — Reuters