British No 1 Emma Raducanu records her second win of the Transylvania Open in Cluj as she reaches the quarter-finals; the US Open champion will take on Ukraine’s Marta Kostyuk on Friday; Cameron Norrie defeated by Felix Auger Aliassime at the Erste Bank Open in Vienna
By Raz Mirza
Last Updated: 29/10/21 7:03am
Emma Raducanu made it two wins from as many matches at the Transylvania Open in Cluj, keeping her on course for a potential showdown with top seed Simona Halep later in the tournament.
The 18-year-old, who has risen from 343 at the end of 2020 to world No 23 heading into the WTA 250 tournament, followed up her maiden victory with another, but in more comfortable fashion this time, against Ana Bogdan.
In just her fourth Tour-level tournament, Raducanu was stress-free as she powered to a 6-3 6-4 victory behind closed doors on Thursday.
“I think that it’s definitely taking me some time to find my feet still. I’m taking some learnings from every match that I play and I don’t think that I’m the finished product yet” said Raducanu during her on-court interview.
“I’m still learning from every match, taking the experience and loving my time here in this tournament so far.”
Raducanu, already a Grand Slam champion after her stunning success at the US Open, saved three break points in her opening service game, but then showed her class by surging into a 3-0 lead before the world No 106 held to get on the board.
The teenager from Bromley in Kent continued with her high-intensity approach to come through a deuce game for 4-1, but Bogan stayed in touch.
After holding for 5-2, Raducanu threatened to seal the set on Bogan’s serve, but the 28-year-old Romanian held on.
The third seed eventually served it out in accomplished fashion with her first hold to love to take control of the contest.
Currently without a coach after parting ways with Andrew Richardson, Raducanu claimed an immediate break at the start of the second set and appeared to be heading for a straightforward win.
A loss of concentration from the British No 1 handed Bogan a route back into the match, however, as the Romanian hit back and dug deep for a 3-2 lead.
Bogdan let her frustration out on umpire Kader Nouni after a contentious line-call in a marathon 12-minute seventh game, which proved pivotal.
Raducanu needed three break points, but she eventually sealed it, before maintaining her level all the way to the finish line for an impressive win.
The British star’s father, who is travelling with his daughter this week, is Romanian and the plan is to go and visit his family in Bucharest after her run at the tournament ends.
She is hoping that will not be any time soon as she plays 19-year-old Marta Kostyuk in the quarter-finals next, after the sixth seed dispatched Mona Barthel of Germany 6-4 6-4.
Despite a back problem, Simona Halep gets past Varvara Gracheva, 6-4, 6-2, and keeps the home hopes alive.
— Transylvania Open (@TransylvaniaOpn) October 28, 2021
Former world No 1 Simona Halep stayed on course for a showdown with Raducanu after defeating Varvara Gracheva 6-4 6-2. The home favourite will take on fellow Romanian Jaqueline Cristian first after the 23-year-old from Bucharest upset fifth seed Ajla Tomljanovic 7-6 (7-5) 7-5.
Norrie knocked out in Vienna
Cameron Norrie squandered three match points as he was knocked out of the Erste Bank Open in Vienna by Felix Auger-Aliassime.
It was a remarkable turnaround from sixth seed Auger-Aliassime, who was 3-6 down in the second-set tie-break before reeling off five points in a row to force a deciding set.
After two hours and 36 minutes, the Canadian came out on top with a 2-6 7-6 (7-6) 6-4 win to reach the quarter-finals of the ATP 500 tournament.
“I just really had in my mind that I couldn’t go away easily. I wanted to push him to really beat me and deserve it in the second set,” Auger-Aliassime told the ATP Tour.
“He did well. I was down three match points. In a way, I was lucky.
“He was so close to winning, I just hit a crazy passing shot on match point to save it, so sometimes the margins are small. That was the case today, so I’ll take it.”
Murray gets Paris wild card
In other news, former Men’s world No 1 Andy Murray has been handed a wildcard into the main draw of the Paris Masters, which begins on Monday.