St. Petersburg Ladies Trophy, Quarter-Final Preview
?? (5) Julia Goerges vs ?? (Q) Elena Rybakina
Julia Goerges and Elena Rybakina will kick-start proceedings on quarter-final day at the St. Petersburg Ladies Trophy. Goerges has been in the form of her career over the last couple of months, an early round slip up at the Australian Open the only disappointment for the German. Goerges is now just 1 win away from reaching the top 10 for the first time in her career. Standing in the German’s way is world number 450 Elena Rybakina, the 18-year-old continues to defy the odds this week and will enter this match with absolutely nothing to lose.
Goerges enters this quarter-final clash in St. Petersburg having won 17 of her last 18 matches. Goerges has battled through her first two matches this week in straight sets, a 6-2 7-6 win over Maria Sakkari and a 7-5 6-0 win over Roberta Vinci. Julia’s second round win over Roberta Vinci was particularly important given Goerges had never previously beaten the Italian in 3 attempts. Julia fired 39 winners past Vinci which included 10 aces, another fantastic performance by the 29-year-old.
Elena Rybakina is having the best week of her young career. The Russian was awarded a wild card into the qualifying draw in St. Petersburg where she won 3 matches reach the main draw. In the opening round on the main competition, Rybakina coolly disposed of Timea Bacsinszky in straight sets, 6-4 6-3 In what was Bacsinszky’s first match since Wimbledon last year and Rybakina’s first tour level MD win. Rybakina secured her spot in the quarter-finals in dramatic fashion, beating Caroline Garcia 4-6 7-6 7-6 in what was Rybakina’s first top 10 victory. Garcia served for the match in the second set, an outstanding comeback by the inexperienced Russian.
This will be the first career meeting between the pair. Whilst there are over 400 places between the two in the rankings, Rybakina has shown all tournament how that counts for little. Can the 18-year-old cause another big upset or will Goerges secure her spot in the top 10 for the first time?