“Nerve-Wracking”: Danielle Collins on Her Quarterfinal Win Over Elena Rybakina at Silicon Valley Classic

Published 08/07/2021, 7:16 AM EDT
Mar 24, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; Danielle Collins of the United States reaches for a forehand against Kristina Mladenovic of France (not pictured) in the first round of the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports


After a hard-fought battle, Danielle Collins reached the semifinals of the 2021 Mubadala Silicon Valley Classic. Collins defeated No.2 seed Elena Rybakina and kept her hopes alive of winning a title on her home soil.

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Despite a straight-set victory, both sets went to the tiebreaker. Collins also went to saving two set points in the tenth game of the opening set.

Mar 24, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; Danielle Collins of the United States hits a forehand against Kristina Mladenovic of France (not pictured) in the first round of the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
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Danielle Collins enters the semifinals

During the post-match press conference, Collins mentioned that despite winning the match she felt as if she was trailing behind her opponent all the time.

“It was weird, even though I won both sets, I felt like I was always playing from behind,” said Collins.

However, the American felt deeply satisfied with having held her nerves in crucial moments which became the deciding factor in the end. Out of the seven break points she faced, Collins saved six of those which ultimately made the difference.

Mar 24, 2021; Miami, Florida, USA; Danielle Collins of the United States reacts after winning a point against Kristina Mladenovic of France (not pictured) in the first round of the Miami Open at Hard Rock Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

“To win a match where you always feel like you’re playing from behind, it’s very rewarding, but during the process, it can be a little nerve-wracking. I was happy that I kept my composure for the most part, and pulled out the win,” said Collins.

In fact, this would be Collins’ third consecutive semifinal appearance this season, after Hungarian Open and the Palermo Ladies Open, where she won her maiden WTA singles title.

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Up next, she faces qualifier Ana Konjuh of Croatia for a place in the final of the WTA 250 event. Konjuh ousted China’s Zhang Shuai in three sets, handing her opponent a bagel in the third set.

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Collins and Konjuh have never played against each other on the tour, hence their head-to-head record stands at 0-0. However, with both players known for their powerful forehands, the match would surely provide the fans with some jaw-dropping winners and nail-biting rallies.

Who do you think would make it to the final?

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Kshitij Tayal

465 articles

Kshitij Tayal is a tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having played district-level tennis competitions, Kshitij is also a tenured journalist of the sport with over four years of experience. At EssentiallySports, he pens down some thought-provoking pieces on players and tournaments across the ATP and WTA.

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