WTA Brisbane International 2020: Ashleigh Barty and Kiki Bertens upset second seeds to enter doubles semis
The very first week of the new tennis season has already started throwing up surprising results. At the Brisbane International 2020, a Premier event on the WTA Tour, the unseeded pair of Ashleigh Barty and Kiki Bertens teamed up to knock out the second seeds, Nicole Melichar and Yifan Xu in a strong 6-3, 6-2 win.
Even considering both Barty and Bertens have found success in singles of late, the outcome was pretty unexpected. That said, Barry's soft hands at the net and her brilliant footwork make her a proficient doubles player and she previously won the US Open in doubles and has also reached the finals of the other three Grand Slams.
Her partnership with the Dutchwoman, who is known for her feisty ground strokes, has been reaping huge rewards this week.
In the first round, the Australian-Dutch combination showed nerves of steel in their narrow 6-7(6), 6-3, 10-8 win over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova and Anett Kontaveit. In their quest for a final berth, Barty and Bertens will now take on the unseeded pair of Kristina Mladenovic and Ajla Tomljanovic, who pummelled Karolina Pliskova and Donna Vekic 6-2, 6-4.
A couple of first round women's doubles matches were also played on Wednesday. Top seeds Su-Wei Hsieh and Barbora Strycova made short work of local pair of Priscilla Hon and Storm Sanders 6-3, 6-4. In another match, Lucie Hradecka and Andreja Klepac ousted Anastasija Sevastova and Sloane Stephens 6-2, 6-2.
In the singles competition, three players booked their spots in the quarter-finals. Eighth seed Madison Keys was brilliant in her 7-5, 6-3 win over wildcard and home favourite Samantha Stosur.
Alison Riske dismissed Barbora Strycova 6-3, 6-4 while Danielle Collins blew away Yulia Putintseva 6-1, 6-0.
On Thursday, top seed Barty and sixth seed Kiki Bertens will be in singles action along with second seed Karolina Pliskova, third seed Naomi Osaka and fifth seed Petra Kvitova as they hunt for a place in the last-eight.