WTA: Coco Gauff makes quick work of Brit Sonay Kartal at Wimbledon

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World No. 2 Coco Gauff lacked home-court advantage but had everything else going for her in defeating British qualifier Sonay Kartal 6-4, 6-0 on Friday at Wimbledon.

Kartal, 22, entered the tournament at No. 298, but with two victories found herself at No. 1 Court in the third round against Gauff, 20, the reigning U.S. Open champion.

Gauff won the first eight points and went up 4-2 before Kartal evened the opening set 4-4, only for the American to dominate the rest of the way and win the match in 61 minutes.

“I think this is my first time playing a British player here,” Gauff said in her on-court interview after the match. “I was a little nervous, honestly. I knew you guys would be for her, which is understandable. … Thankfully, you guys were pretty nice to me.”

Gauff couldn’t be too nice in a competitive match, posting five aces and 16 winners, to one and six for Kartal, who made 21 unforced errors to 15 for her opponent.

Gauff made 89.7 percent (26 of 29) of her first-serve points and went 5 of 9 on break-point opportunities.

“I thought I played really well; she was playing really well at a high level, especially at the first set,” Gauff said. “It’s been a great tournament for her, and I know how special it is to play at home, so I am happy that she had such a good tournament and, hopefully, she’ll be back for many more in the future.”

Gauff, who has lost just 10 games in three matches, advanced for the first time since 2021 to Wimbledon’s fourth round, where she will face fellow American Emma Navarro. The No. 19 seed responded from an opening-set loss to defeat Russian Diana Schnaider 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.

Emma Raducanu of Great Britain made the home country happy with a 6-2, 6-3 upset of No. 9 Maria Sakkari in the Round of 32.

Seventh-seeded Jasmine Paolini reached the second week of Wimbledon for the first time in her career by defeating former U.S. Open champion Bianca Andreescu of Canada 7-6 (4), 6-1. Paolini also became the first Italian in the Open Era to advance to the round of 16 at each of the first three women’s singles Grand Slam events in one season.

After Paolini won the first-set tiebreak, she was down 1-0 in the second set but lost just 10 points the rest of the way and didn’t face a game point in winning the last six games.

Paolini faces No. 12 seed Madison Keys in the fourth round. Keys knocked off 18th seed Marta Kostyuk of Ukraine 6-4, 6-3 in one hour and 21 minutes. The American converted four of 11 break-point opportunities and won 71.1 percent of her first-serve points.

Spain’s Paula Badosa, who has battled a back issue since the start of the 2023 season, upset No. 14 Daria Kasatkina 7-6 (6), 4-6, 6-4 in two hours and 51 minutes.

Badosa, in stopping her Russian opponent’s seven-match win streak, moved on to the fourth round at Wimbledon for the third time in her career.

“I know it’s not my first time in the second week of a Grand Slam,” Badosa said in her-on-court interview, “but for me it’s a special one because a few months ago I didn’t know if I could play tennis anymore. So to be here is very special.”

A former World No. 2, Badosa, 26, had won consecutive matches just once in the first four months since returning to competition in January.

Donna Vekic of Croatia battled through two sets, then dominated the third to oust No. 28 Dayana Yastremska of Ukraine 7-6 (4), 6-7 (3), 6-1. New Zealand’s Lulu Sun won a battle with China’s Lin Zhu, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (6).

–Field Level Media

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