Muchova overcomes dizziness to beat Barty, reaches Australian Open semis


Melbourne, February 17

Karolina Muchova said she was so dizzy she thought she was going to faint during her Australian Open quarterfinal against Ash Barty on Wednesday before a lengthy medical timeout helped her regain her composure to turn the tables on the world No. 1.

Home favourite and top seed Barty was leading by a set and a break when Muchova called for the timeout at a steamy Rod Laver Arena.

“I was feeling kind of dizzy at some point, like really lost and almost fainting. I just asked for help,” said Muchova, who won 1-6 6-3 6-2 to reach the semifinals.

“They just checked my (blood) pressure because I was a bit lost, you know? I was spinning. So they cooled me down a bit with ice, and it helped me.”

Play resumed nine minutes later and a recharged Muchova found her feet almost immediately, breaking Barty’s serve for the first time in the match.

With shortened rallies and bold shot-making, Muchova went on to break her opponent twice in the final set to reach a Grand Slam semi for the first time.

“Played a bit faster, going to the net. I think that was the key by the end,” said the Czech.

Muchova’s comeback was her third come-from-behind win of the campaign. She reeled off the last seven games from 5-0 down in the second set to win in the 7-5 7-5 against compatriot Karolina Pliskova.

Against Elise Mertens, Muchova clawed back from a 4-0 deficit in the opening set, while against Barty, she claimed 12 of the final 15 games.

“Honestly … I’m trying to start good,” Muchova said. “It seems a bit like these slow starts for me are a tradition I can’t get rid of here.”

Muchova will next face American Jennifer Brady for a place in the final. Reuters



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