WTA Cincinnati: Madison Keys edges out Coco Vandeweghe in tight three set affair

The two friends met once again, this time in the early rounds of Cincy. Keys would go on to take it in three sets.

WTA Cincinnati: Madison Keys edges out Coco Vandeweghe in tight three set affair
Keys hitting a forehand (Noel Alberto/VAVEL)

Madison Keys and Coco Vandeweghe met once again after meeting a couple of weeks ago at the Bank of the West Classic in Stanford. Keys won that in a tight, straight sets affair. At the Western and Southern Open, it would be Keys who would once again get the better of her good friend winning 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.

Keys Takes Opener As Vandeweghe Struggles On Serve

Both women struggled on serve early on as they had to save break points in their opening service game. The 25-year-old continued to struggle and was broken in her second service game after hitting a shot into the net. Keys would hold quickly to love to consolidate a 3-1 lead.

After Vandeweghe was broken, we were back to seeing what many are used to, quick service games. Once again however, the Australian Open semifinalist was pushed to deuce. In this game, Keys hit a ball that was called out but the 16th seed challenged it, and the ball was clearly inside the baseline, much to the dismay of the 22-year-old as they had to replay the point.

Keys would finish off the first set on her second set point, taking the set on a forehand winner.

Vandeweghe Dominant On Serve Once Again

Vandeweghe opened the second set serving and quickly fell into a 15-30 hole with Keys really attacking the Vandeweghe backhand. The 25-year-old would get pushed to deuce but held with a forehand cross-court winner. Vandeweghe was beginning to take control of the points, and it showed as she broke Keys at 15 for a 2-0 lead.

With the world number 23 down a break point in her following service game, she put away a volley to get it to deuce. She went on to hold for 3-0. Keys would go on to hold at 15 but still remained down 1-3.

At 3-5, 30-15 down, Keys was looking to try and put some pressure on the 25-year-old, but a huge forehand put Keys on the defense before an easy cross-court put away gave Vandeweghe set points. The American number four closed out the set with a massive ace down the tee to take it 6-3. 

Keys Prevails Despite Conceding Break Lead

Keys held easily to start the decisive set and then broke Vandeweghe in her opening service game to grab the early lead. The Stanford champion was dominant on serve to take a 3-0 lead. The 25-year-old American would not back down though, holding at 30 to get on the board to in the final set.

The 22-year-old faced break point in her next service game but a huge forehand forced an error out of Vandeweghe to get to deuce. After staving off another break point, a long backhand by Keys put the final set back on serve. Vandeweghe went on to level it at three-all. 

After holding for 4-3, Keys went on to break for a 5-3 lead to serve out for the match. Despite going 40-0 up, Vandeweghe would try and go down swinging saving all three match points with the third coming off of a huge forehand winner. Despite her efforts, it was not enough as Keys would go on to prevail 6-3 in the third