Svetlana Kuznetsova earned an impressive win over ninth seed Agnieszka Radwanska in the fourth round of the Wimbledon Championships, putting in a flawless display to triumph in straight sets after looking on fire throughout the match.
Kuznetsova puts up impressive display to win the first set 6-2
Radwanska came into the match firing as she produced some strong serves and followed it up with some impressive net play, looking to close out the game after owning a 40-0 lead. Unexpectedly, Kuznetsova managed to rattle five straight points and get the first break of serve in the opening game, sealing the break with a forehand winner. After overcoming some early struggles on her serve, the Russian then consolidated the break with an ace to get the hold, opening a 2-0 lead. Firing on all cylinders, Kuznetsova hit three consecutive winners to clinch yet another service break, continuing to cruise through the match.
The seventh seed was able to hit winners literally from everywhere, easily holding her serve to consolidate the break for a formidable 4-0 lead, playing some of her peak tennis. Radwanska finally spared herself some embarrassment as she got herself onto the scoreboard with some great net play, preventing herself from trailing further. Fending off a break point in the sixth game, Kuznetsova placed herself just a game away from winning the opening set as she was still as solid as ever. The Russian eventually closed out the first set comfortably, holding her serve to 15 as she successfully served out the set 6-2 after just 33 minutes of play, being just a set away from the quarterfinals.
Kuznetsova steals the set at the last moment
Carrying over the momentum from the first set, some impressive play from Kuznetsova earned her a break point as she continued to blast winners at her own will. However, Radwanska stood firm and hit three consecutive forehand winners to secure the nervy service hold in the opening game, looking to send the match into a deciding set. Nevertheless, Kuznetsova was still untouchable on her serve, continuing to serve efficiently and consistently to level the scores. A marathon game followed as Radwanska fended off five break points in the lengthy game which lasted for over 10 minutes, allowing the Pole to just narrowly hold onto her service game. Three straight unforced errors prevented Radwanska from making an impact in her return games as Kuznetsova strolled to a comfortable hold yet again, keeping the scores tight.
The Russian was still wasteful in her chances as she failed to convert another break point while Radwanska showed some great mental toughness to hold her serves each time to remain on serve. Kuznetsova finally managed to make the first breakthrough of the second set as she broke serve in the seventh game and taking the crucial lead at the last moments. After consolidating the break, the seventh seed was just one game away from the huge victory but Radwanska was determined to make Kuznetsova work hard for the win as she held her serve and forced the Russian to serve it out. Kuznetsova and her infamous "chokes" seemed to have come into play when Radwanska earned two break points while the two-time Grand Slam champion attempted to serve the match out. However, the Russian was able to recover in time as she finally claimed the victory by hitting three winners in the last four points of the match, sealing the win after 89 minutes of play.
Stats Corner: Kuznetsova absolutely firing in the match
Kuznetsova was definitely playing some of her peak tennis in this match, hitting an incredible 37 winners which went along with 20 unforced errors. She performed much better in this aspect as compared to the defensive Radwanska, who hit just a mere 13 winners and came with a heavy price of 15 unforced errors. Kuznetsova was dominant on her first serve, winning 74 percent of points off them and was also effective on her vulnerable second serves, unexpectedly losing just six points on them throughout the match. Whereas, Radwanska only managed to win eight points off her second serve, making up just 30 percent of second service points won.