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Wu Yibing out after impressive run, Zhang Shuai makes last 16 at US Open

Xinhua | Updated: 2022-09-03 15:59
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Wu Yibing winds up a return to Nuno Borges at the US Open on Wednesday. USA TODAY SPORTS

NEW YORK - The history-making momentum of China's Wu Yibing stopped as he lost to defending champion Daniil Medvedev from Russia, while Zhang Shuai will make her first last 16 appearance at US Open.

The 2022 US Open marked the 22-year-old Wu's Grand Slam main-draw debut. Despite the defeat, he had already started a new page in Chinese tennis history by reaching US Open men's singles last 32.

"This amazing journey gives me more confidence to forge ahead. It is a valuable opportunity to learn from world leading tennis players. I will keep practicing and improving my skills to bring more surprise to fans in the future," Wu said after losing 6-4, 6-2, 6-2 in the men's singles third round.

The United States has been a happy hunting ground for Wu. He became the world No 1 in the ITF juniors ranking after winning the boys' singles title at the 2017 US Open.

Medvedev was impressed with the young Chinese player's performance, "He was playing good. Returns were unbelievable. I feel the level was really high."

World No.1 Medvedev, not dropping a single set so far, finished the match against Wu with 12 aces, winning about 71 percent of his first-serve points.

"I was serving a little bit better than him, and that was the key today. But it was a really tough match, a lot of tight games," said Medvedev.

In the women's singles, Zhang Shuai claimed a straight-set victory over Canadian Rebecca Marino 6-2, 6-4 on Friday, reaching the round of 16 at the US Open for the first time in her career. She thus became only the second Chinese player to achieve the last 16 at all Grand Slams after Li Na, two-time Grand Slam winner who were induced into the International Tennis Hall of Fame in 2019.

"Many young Chinese tennis players grow up this time, so I am not alone like the last two years. The Chinese team is getting stronger and stronger," 33-year-old Zhang said of her high expectations on the young players.

Hours later, Zhang, with Mate Pavic of Croatia, beat American pair Louisa Chirico/Bradley Klahn 7-6 (1), 6-3, to advance into mixed doubles second round.

In the women's doubles, seventh seeds Chinese pair Xu Yifan/Yang Zhaoxuan moved to the third round after defeating Swedish-Russian pair Rebecca Peterson/Anastasia Potapova 6-3, 6-4.

21-year-old Chinese player Wang Xiyu lost to American Alison Riske-Amritraj 6-4, 3-6, 6-4. Wang shocked world No. 3 Maria Sakkari of Greece 3-6, 7-5, 7-5 on Wednesday to reach the third round at a Grand Slam for the first time.

Wang, together with another three Chinese players, Zhang Shuai, 19-year-old Zheng Qinwen and 24-year-old Yuan Yue, entered the last 32 of the US Open women's singles. It marks the first time for China that four players enter the women's singles third round at a Grand Slam tournament.

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