Unseeded Czech Marie Bouzkova snapped Frenchwoman Caroline Garcia’s eight-match winning run on grass with a 7-5 6-2 victory in the Wimbledon fourth round today (July 3) to reach her first Grand Slam quarter-final.
Since knocking out American seventh seed Danielle Collins in the opening round, the 23-year-old Bouzkova has grown from strength to strength at the grasscourt Grand Slam where she had never previously got past the second round.
The 66th-ranked Czech had won her only previous match on grass against Garcia who was considered a contender to win Wimbledon this year after her title run at Bad Homburg and a wide open women’s draw.
“If you would tell me before the tournament started I would be in the quarters, I probably wouldn’t believe you,” said Bouzkova, who will next meet either Ons Jabeur, the highest seed remaining in the women’s draw, or 24th seed Elise Mertens.
“Always try to take it match by match. Since first match has been really tough journey for me. Just to be now in the quarters, it’s something very special for me.
“I’m just really proud that I’ve been able to handle everything the way I have and just enjoy the moment.”
With Wimbledon playing a full schedule for the first time on the middle Sunday, Bouzkova broke 55th-ranked Garcia early on Court Two but was broken back in the eighth game.
From 4-5 down in the opening set, however, Bouzkova, who made only four unforced errors in the match, won nine of the next 11 games to seal victory in an hour and 23 minutes.
Bouzkova was forced to withdraw from Roland Garros after testing positive for COVID-19 ahead of her second-round match.
“I’ve actually been feeling really well physically after COVID in Paris,” she told reporters.
“I always like to play on grass. I just know it takes a few days, maybe one or two matches, to get used to it, to make some small changes.”