In this match, there seemed to be a small contingent of Romanian fans in the stands cheering on Sorana Cirstea- but no French fans wee visible for Garcia. Anyhow, in the opening game, Cirstea had 3 break points and broke to love. Cirstea then went on a run of winning 6 straight points, before Garcia won her first point of the match at 1-0 30-15. However, from then onwards, Garcia went on a streak of her own and broke Cirstea back. Caroline fired off a couple of aces to consolidate her service game to lead 2 games to 1.
At 2 all 30-0, Garcia made a brilliant approach shot and dissipated the volley of Cirstea. She then followed this with her first double fault of the match. Incredibly, immediately after this, Garcia fired an ace to take the lead at 3-2. But an amazing forehand up the line gave Cirstea a 30-0 lead on Garcia’s serve. An errant return that drifted to the left sideline then granted Cirstea another break point. However, Garcia drew from the well to land an ace to save 1 break point. Nevertheless, Cirstea was not be denied a second time, nailing an overhead smash which Garcia put racquet to ball to- but still sprayed the ball wide.
Garcia got to Cirseta’s backhand return late- then a forehand winner into the corner with some topspin allowed Cirstea to take the lead at 5-3. Garcia was now serving to stay in the first set. However, a first-class forehand that painted the line in the corner of Cirstea’s side of the baseline allowed Caroline some breathing room for just the second time in this match. In Cirstea’s service game to serve for the set, Garcia fired the first point of the game out. Garcia then drew ahead at 30-15 before a mistimed error into the net gave the point back to Cirstea. Cirstea then had a break point- and served a ball which went through Garcia’s armpit! In such a fashion, Cirstea took the opening set 6-4 in 37 minutes
The second set was quite level until Cirstea broke again at 3-2. However an excellent backhand drive for the ball right into the corner saved a game point for Garcia. Garcia then had a hattrick of chances at 4-3 to break Cirstea- and capitalised by playing safe off the drive volley. However the very next point Cirstea seemed to have a target and nailed a low backhand volley. Cirstea then won the next 2 points to take a commanding 30-0 lead. Some great racquet head control allowed Garcia to get on the board in this game with a volley. However, incredibly Cirstea had another break point chance, but Garcia forced the error after a defensive masterclass from both players. Garcia then won the next point, thus saving 2 break points in this game alone. However a big serve wide into the backhand corner allowed Garcia to gain deuce. Garcia then topped it off with an ace, getting away up to the net with a stick backhand volley to take the lead in this second set! Garcia launched a missile of a forehand winner into the right corner for her 24th and 25th winners of the match, taking the second ball whilst celebrating and on the run with a running Nadal like fistpump! Caroline consequently took the 2nd set, while Cirstea dropped her first set all tournament- despite leading 6-4 4-3 40-love.
In the third and final set, Cirstea broke Garcia in her opening service game of the final stanza of the match. Cirstea then raced away to a 3-0 lead, and seemed likely to bagel Garcia on the way out of this match. However, Garcia showed incredible resolve to race to a 5-4, winning 5 of the next 6 games. However, for the second time this match, just as Garcia seemed to have a lead, she allowed herself to be broken the very next game. Cirstea then served for the match at 6-5, and eventually went on to defeat World number 5 Caroline Garcia in 3 sets.