Alison survives three match points in thriller

The second round meeting with Anna Karolina Schmiedlova was a match with tons of break points. By winning two tie-breaks, Alison edged out Schmiedlova 1-6 7-6 (7/3) 7-6 (7/5).

Not getting a high percentage of first serves in made things difficult for Alison in the first set. Despite leading 30 to 0, Alison’s serve was broken for the first time in the fourth game. Alison double faulted in her next servicegame and found herself trailing by 5 games to 1. A backhand into the net ended the first set.

Alison won in the next sets a lot more points than her opponent on the first serve but it still remained close. Both players faced a series of break points. They did hold serve till 3 games all in the second set. From that point on both Ali and Schmiedlova were each broken three times. Alison came back from a break down each time. A superb backhand volley and forehand winner down the line gave Alison a 4-0-lead in the tie-break. Schmiedlova came a bit closer for a moment but Alison did force three set points. Three deep strokes from Ali forced an error out of Schmiedlova.

Alison continued to do that in the third set and led by 3 games to 1. The next four games went into the other direction but fortunately Alison broke back right in time. She did still face three match points. The first two times, she opted for serve-and-volley. On the second match point, she had to finish the point on the fifth ball with a smash. On the third match point, Schmiedlova’s return only just fell in. Alison was able to bring the ball back and her opponent made an error with the forehand.

Alison trailed 2-0 in the deciding breaker after a succesfull backhand passing shot from Schmiedlova. A great acceleration and a strong serve from Ali evened the score. Alison pushed on and had two match points at a score of 6-4 in the tie-break. On the second match point, Ali’s forehand touched the line. It was just enough to qualify for the quarter-finals at Linz.