Giorgi ousts holder, faces Azarenka next

Camila Giorgi hitting a return to Caroline Wozniacki yesterday. She beat the two-time defending champion in a marathon match.
Camila Giorgi hitting a return to Caroline Wozniacki yesterday. She beat the two-time defending champion in a marathon match.PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

TOKYO • Caroline Wozniacki was chasing a hat-trick of Pan Pacific Open titles, but her quest ended yesterday following a 2-6, 6-2, 4-6 defeat by Camila Giorgi of Italy.

The world No. 2 Dane hit 14 winners to 17 unforced errors in a last-16 match that lasted 2hr 5min in Tokyo. Giorgi struck 45 winners to 29 unforced errors.

The victory was world No. 37 Giorgi's first against a top-10 player on hard courts since the Katowice Open in 2015, where she beat then-world No. 9 Agnieszka Radwanska.

The 26-year-old Italian has also defeated Wozniacki three times previously, all on the hard surface.

"It was a very good match," Giorgi was reported as saying on the WTA website. "This is a nice court and (today) was very fun."

Next up for Giorgi in the quarter-finals today is Belarusian Victoria Azarenka, who beat Ashleigh Barty of Australia 6-4, 6-2 yesterday.

On facing the two-time Grand Slam champion and former world No. 1, Giorgi said: "I'll just focus on my game, like always, and I'll hope to play like this - very consistent."

Azarenka, 29, who has tumbled down the rankings following a lengthy custody battle for her baby Leo, will be the fresher of the two players after her 1hr 18 min match.

Currently ranked 63rd and competing as a wild card, she has reached the quarter-finals for the first time since 2012.

"Obviously it's been a while since I've played, but I'm just trying to look day by day and see what happens," she said.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

WTA PAN PACIFIC OPEN

Q-finals: StarHub Ch203, 11am

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on September 21, 2018, with the headline 'Giorgi ousts holder, faces Azarenka next'. Print Edition | Subscribe