Ashleigh Barty and Belinda Bencic Get Direct Entry Into Quarters of Adelaide Post Australian Open 2021 Exit

February 21, 2021 4:00 pm

World Number 1 Ash Barty and 12-ranked Swiss star Belinda Bencic have received straight byes into the quarter-finals of WTA, Adelaide, which kicked off on Sunday.

British tennis star Johanna Konta and Belgian Elise Mertens will also launch the campaign in the tournament’s last eight, according to the draw released by the women’s tennis body.

Ash Barty fell in the quarters of the Australian Open this year

Going into the Australian Open as the top-seed and the home favorite, Barty made short work of her opponents on the way to reaching the quarters.

However, after winning the opening set in the last-eight clash against Czech star Karolina Muchova, the Australian lost the next two to go out of the tournament.

Tennis – Australian Open – Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, February 11, 2021 Switzerland’s Belinda Bencic celebrates after winning her second round match against Russia’s Svetlana Kuznetsova REUTERS/Loren Elliott

Barty will go into the Adelaide event as the defending champion, having beaten Dayana Yastremska of Ukraine 6-2, 7-5 to clinch the title last year.

But it was still a remarkable performance considering how she missed the entire stretch of the shortened women’s tour last year owing to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Belinda Bencic was dumped in the third round of the Australian Open

Bencic’s campaign at Melbourne Park ended in the 3rd round this year as she was trounced in straight sets by Mertens. The Swiss fell in the quarter-finals of the Adelaide International last year, losing to American Danielle Collins 3-6, 1-6. 

The Round-of-32 in the tournament this year will feature some absorbing battles, involving, among others, the reigning French Open champion Iga Swiatek as well as former World Number 1 and Grand Slam champion Samantha Stosur.

Also in the fray in the event’s fourth round is 72nd-ranked Australian Ajla Tomljanovic, who gave a massive scare to World Number 2 Simona Halep before losing in the second-round encounter at Melbourne Park this year.

Halep eventually went out in the quarter-final, losing 3-6, 3-6 to the 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams.

In notable results on the opening day of the tournament, American Christina McHale beat Ivana Popovic of Australia to progress to the second round, while Japanese Misaki Doi dumped crowd favorite Arina Rodionova out of the tournament in straight sets.

American teen sensation Coco Gauff is slated to open her campaign against Francesca Jones of Great Britain later on Sunday.

Priyabrata Chowdhury

Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing. From covering live matches to writing features or reports on all that’s happening in the world of tennis, he is mining his interest in the sport to strive for writing excellence. When he is not busy writing about tennis, he likes to read, watch his favorite shows and films on Netflix or other streaming platforms, or catch Roger Federer in action.

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