Indian Wells: Ash Barty loses three-set epic to Elina Svitolina – media
Ash Barty (Australia) has fallen agonisingly short of earning one of the biggest wins of her career, dropping an epic round of 16 clash at Indian Wells to Elina Svitolina (Ukraine).
In the longest women's match of the year to date, world number six Svitolina edged a 7-6(8) 5-7 6-4 win to book a spot in the quarter-finals against Czech surprise package Marketa Vondrousova, according to Sporting News.
A win over Svitolina would have propelled Barty into the top 10 of the WTA rankings for the first time in her career.
Barty had 17 break-point chances against Svitolina, converting six of them during the three hour, 12 minute classic.
The 22-year-old will still reach a new career high ranking of 11th in the world when the new rankings are released next week.
Barty was the last remaining Australian in the tournament in the women's or men's side of the draw.
Barty won't have to wait long for another chance to break into the top 10, with the Miami Open kicking off next week, while Svitolina earns her first quarter-final berth at Indian Wells.
Barty had five set points in the first set, but a series of errors cost her dearly as Svitolina held her nerve to take the tie-break 10-8.
Barty fended off two match points in the second set, coming from behind to take the frame 7-5.
In the third, she went up an early break, but was broken twice in quick succession – the second time to love. The Australian saved four match-points overall, but couldn't escape a fifth chance as she hit a forehand into the net to take the win.
Svitolina, who made the semis in Dubai and Doha, will play surprise quarter-finalist Vondrousova after the 19-year-old scored a shock three-set win over world number two Simona Halep.