Tomljanovic bows out in Charleston Open

Charleston: Ajla Tomljanovic has bowed out of the Charleston Open, but not before giving top seed Sloane Stephens a genuine fright in a 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 third-round loss.

Tomljanovic took the only break of the first set and carried her momentum against the former French Open finalist into the opening games of the second.

She reeled off 11 straight points to race to a 3-0 lead and looked set for her first win over Stephens in five meetings.

But Stephens clicked into gear, winning five games in a row and forcing a deciding set with another break of serve.

Tomljanovic continued to go for her shots in the third set, breaking first and held a point for a 5-3 lead before Stephens fought back to win the final three games.

While Tomljanovic hit more winners than her opponent, Stephens prevailed by making fewer errors.

"Ajla played really well today. I think she played at a really high level and it made me raise my level," Stephens said.

Defending champion Kiki Bertens suffered a surprise 7-6 (8-6), 6-3 loss to world No.50 Maria Sakkari.

Sakkari showcased supreme court coverage throughout the almost two-hour match.

She next plays fifth seed Wozniacki, who beat 12th-seeded Romanian Mihaela Buzarnescu 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.

Ninth seed Belinda Bencic extended her fine form with a 6-2, 7-5 win over Taylor Townsend to reach the quarter-finals, while Petra Martic beat Jessica Pegula 2-6, 6-3, 6-2.

Reuters

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