Team USA’s Madison Keys will battle Carla Navarro of Spain in the third-round of the 2016 Olympic Tennis women’s singles tournament on Tuesday. Afterwards, Serena Williams looks to continue her gold-medal defense, as she takes on Elina Svitolina of Ukraine in their third-round clash.
Keys advanced to the Round of 16 after outlasting Kristina Mladenovic of France in a grueling marathon match on Monday. Their second-round showdown lasted 3 hours and 14 minutes. A nagging shoulder injury did not deter Keys from posting a 7-5, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (5) win over Mladenovic.
“Today was really tough,” Keys told Bravo Network after the match, via Quad-City Times. “I definitely was not playing my best tennis, but I just kept fighting and knew that if I could stay in the match that I would maybe get another opportunity to get back into it.”
Keys will take on world No. 12 Carla Navarro in the third round of the tournament. Navarro secured a spot in the Round of 16 by breezing past Ana Konjuh of Croatia on Monday. Navarro did not let the match drag to a third set. She defeated Konjuh 7-6 (5), 6-3.
Reigning gold medalist and world No.1 Serena Williams had a very competitive Round of 32 matchup against Alize Cornet of France. Cornet was determined to pull off an upset. She went into the match with an extra spring on her step.
Williams had to earn each of her points as Cornet played excellent defensive tennis. The tournament’s top seed was clearly frustrated. She made her feelings known when she smashed her racket to the court. NBC posted a photo of the wreckage on Twitter.
Williams scored two set points to capture the first set in a tiebreaker. She kept her composure in the second set while Cornet was unable to maintain her fiery performance from the opening set.
Williams won the match 7-6 (5), 6-2. Her next opponent is world No. 20 Elina Svitolina. The Ukrainian sensation is fresh off a 6-3, 1-6, 6-3 victory over Heather Watson of Great Britain, per Rio2016.com.