Giant-killer Amanmuradova stuns Szavay in Bangalore Open

Akgul Amanmuradova of Uzbekistan defeated fifth seed Agnes Szavay of Hungary in the second round of the Bangalore Open.

updated: March 05, 2008 14:53 IST
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Giant-killer Akgul Amanmuradova of Uzbekistan added one more seeded scalp to her kitty as she upset fifth seed Agnes Szavay of Hungary in a tough three-setter in the second round of the $600,000 Canara Bank Bangalore Open at the Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association Wednesday.

The six-foot-three-inch Amanmuradova, ranked 83rd, used her booming serves to battle past the 18-year-old Hungarian sensation 4-6, 7-6(4), 6-4 in little more than two and a half hours to book a quarterfinal berth.

Amanmuradova earlier defeated defending champion Yaroslava Shvedova of Russia in the opening round.

Szavay, ranked 17 in the WTA rankings, started the match in an authoritative manner using her deep backhand volleys to great perfection and opened up the court to set up winners.

Szavay broke the Uzbek as early as in the third game of the opening set to go up 3-1. She later saved a break point on the seventh game of the set with a deep forehand cross-court winner and then held serve to pocket the set 6-4.

The second set started on a similar note with the fifth seed breaking Amanmuradova in the very first game. But that's how far the game went according to the script.

From there on the Uzbek started her fightback. She broke back to restore parity. Games went with serves till 6-6 before the tie-breaker was applied. In the tie-breaker the tall and big-built Amanmuradova came out with booming serves to seal the set 7-6 (4) and send the match into the third set.

Into the third and final set, it was Amanmuradova who broke Szavay in the very first game. But then it was the fifth seeded Szavay's turn to fight back as she restored parity in the sixth game.

Amanmuradova shifted another gear to break Szavay in the ninth game and then used her big serve to hold onto her own and close the match at 6-4 in the third set.

In the quarter-finals, she will meet the winner of the match between fourth seed Patty Schnyder of Switzerland and Akiko Nakamura of Japan to be played later in the day.

Amanmuradova's big serve was a major factor and she used it to good effect firing 16 aces as compared to Szavay's two.

In the last two sets, the Hungarian's backhand, normally a strong point for her, did not work as well as in the first set. Amanmuradova also used her height to great use in reaching the ball.

"I think Akgul (Amanmuradova) played very well. She was serving exceedingly well. But I don't think I made too many mistakes, may be my confidence level was not high," a disappointed looking Szavay said.