World No.70 Melanie Oudin can now be called the slayer of the Russians, as the 17-year-old American hope defeated Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova in the first round, fourth seed Elena Dementieva in the second, seed No.29 Maria Sharapova in the third, and now Nadia Petrova in the fourth.
Oudin won just one game in the opening set, but the second was quite a different story. When the 13th-seeded Petrova was serving for a 5-3 lead, Oudin broke back to level at 4-4, and step by step forced a tiebreak which she decisively won 7-2. Oudin then rolled through the deciding set, taking advantage of Petrova’s 22 unforced errors. Final score: 1-6 7-6(2) 6-3.
As the excitement of the past week didn’t catch up with determined Oudin, she’ll be playing her first Grand Slam quarterfinal. Oudin’s opponent in the final eight will be either yet another Russian, sixth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova, or ninth-seeded Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark.
In addition, Oudin’s ranking will rise to at least No.45 when the US Open is over. (photo via Life.com)