The match was pretty messy all the way through. Aleks :sad: Too bad she couldn't hold onto the break in the second set. She looked so dejected and lacking in confidence. Hopefully she'll do better in the doubles.
As a Krunic fan it was disappointing to see that very tight 2nd set escape from her. But what was more disappointing was to see how down Aleks looks at the moment. She was clearly trying and was hitting numerous good shots and yet she seems somehow disinterested in the result, as if she was going through the motions of trying rather than actually caring about the result. I hope life is going okay for her outside of tennis and I hope it isn't too long before she is actually enjoying her tennis again. There were no signs of that today even during the periods when she was competing very well.
I would say one more thing. One doesn't beat Ostapenko by trying play like Ostapenko. Ostapenko does Ostapenko better than anyone else. If you get into a hard-hitting battle to hit winners with Jelena you will lose almost everytime. I am surprised Aleks took that sort of approach today and I am even more surprised she almost got away with it in the 2nd set. Nevertheless, that is not how to beat Ostapenko. You beat Ostapenko by being solid. By making returns, by getting 1st serves in and not double faulting and by retrieving well and making Jelena hit one more shot over and over. You beat her by changing the pace, creating angles, making her move without going for the flashy winner. Discipline. You let Ostapenko's game break down. 14 winners in 2 sets is a lot of winners to hit against Ostapenko who is generally very tough to hit winners against because she is normally putting her opponent on the back foot. But 24 errors against Ostapenko won't get the job done. 5 winners, 10 errors are the kind of numbers that players that beat Ostapenko usually end up with.
Having said all that credit to Jelena for a having a pretty good day. She had some awful patches and some extremely good patches as she does every match. Today they just about levelled out, the good patches might even have edged it. Jelena did return Aleks' serve very well and Aleks wasn't serving badly. That was very much the key to Jelena's victory. I can't recall an Ostapenko match I have seen in a long while in which Jelena put so many returns into play. She hardly missed any. 36 errors is also on the low side for her. So, by her standards it was a pretty clean match.