Zheng Jie out of Australian Open
Updated: 2012-01-23 17:24
Zheng Jie of China hits a return to Sara Errani of Italy during their women's singles match at the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne January 23, 2012. [Photo/Agencies]
MELBOURNE - China's Zheng Jie lost to Italian Sara Errani 2-6, 1-6 in the fourth round at the 2012 Australian Open here Monday.
World No.48 Errani claimed an impressive double break to race into an early 4-0 lead. Zheng, who reached the semifinals in 2010, only hold one serve game in the whole match, which occurred in the second set.
"I was totally overwhelmed today on court," said Zheng, "I was not used to the way she plays and I could not answer with powerful backhand returns because of my back injury."
"She did play well today and better than me," said Zheng, with a smile, "but I am satisfied with all the matches played here in Melbourne Park."
"After a year off, I didn't expect that I could go this far at the Australian Open," said Zheng, who missed a whole season due to her wrist injury in 2011.
The Italian adapted to the conditions and unleashed her true colors at the Melbourne Park. After dumping Zheng, she not only maintained her winning streak against the Chinese but also booked a quarter-final spot at this major hard court tournament which holds prize money of 2.3 million U.S. dollars for the winner.
Errani flashed into the Margaret Court Arena and wiped out the opening four games in a row before the Chinese snatched a break back. She broke Zheng's serve twice again and bagged the opener with a 6-2 victory.
As the only Chinese player left in the main draw, Zheng was broke four times in the first set by the 24-year-old opponent. She also had 47 unforced errors, while Errani only made 18.
Zheng held her opening serve in the following set, but only saw the Italian went into the rage mode and stroke out the last five games in a row, earning the breadstick in 42 minutes. She swiped in entire serves without facing any obstacle and cashed in both break chances.
Zheng Jie also had five double faults while her first serve points won percentage is only 39 percent. Errani got nine break points and grabbed six of them.
The loss stops Zheng Jie's eight-match winning streak in the new season.
Errani's next challenge is the world number two Petra Kvitova, who upset Ana Ivanovic in straight sets 6-2, 7-6(2) to set-up this encounter.