Donna Vekić ran out of gas Wednesday afternoon in Melbourne in only her second ever Grand Slam quarterfinal match. She lost 3-6, 2-6 to Sabalenka, who was simply better and more powerful on the day. However, Vekić didn’t do herself any favors in the 2-setter as she double faulted 13 times in the match and only hit her 1st serve in at a 50% conversion rate. It’s a shame she lost this match with a Grand Slam semifinal on the line as Vekić was 5-1 in her career against Sabalenka going into today. Nonetheless, Vekić made it to her second GS quarterfinal (2019 US Open) and will now move into the world top-35 rankings, pipping Petra Martić by two spots.
Vekić should hold her head high as she carried the Croatian flag for tennis at the Australian Open this year. Petra Martić only won one match at the tournament. Borna Ćorić was ousted on Day 1. Marin Čilić never got to play due to a knee injury, which he had surgery on while the Australian Open was being played.
Next stop: Indian Wells Masters 1000 tournament in March. Indian Wells is considered the “5th Slam” in many tennis circles. Vekić, Martić, and Čorić should all have top-40 world rankings going into this tournament with Čilić expected to sit this one out due to rehab. See you all in the desert in March.