Emma Raducanu put up a valiant effort but ultimately bowed out of the Madrid Open after a seesaw three-set defeat against the unseeded Ukrainian Anhelina Kalinina.
Raducanu was out-of-sorts and outmuscled in an opening set that lasted just 35 minutes, after which she briefly left the court for a medical timeout having clutched her back on a couple of occasions.
Amazingly, she seemed rejuvenated and took advantage of an error count creeping up from her opponent to take the third-round match to a decider, only for Kalinina to hold her nerve and prevail 6-2, 2-6, 6-4.
While Kalinina can look forward to a quarter-final showdown against Switzerland’s Jil Teichmann, Raducanu, seeded ninth in the Spanish capital, can take some solace for her dogged determination.
“I want to give credit to Emma because I think we both played very good, the match was great in my opinion,” Kalinina said afterwards on Amazon Prime.
“I appreciate in this moment I was maybe luckier and I did better in the decisive points. I am happy I won this match.”