NEW YORK, Sept. 4 (Xinhua) — Top seed and defending champion Iga Swiatek’s title defence ended after a fourth-round loss to Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko, while Novak Djokovic eased past Borna Gojo to reach his 13th US Open quarterfinal on Sunday.
After a strong first set, Swiatek lost two consecutive sets to the Latvian, who stormed back to clinch a 3-6, 6-3, 6-1 victory.
With the loss, Swiatek will also surrender her status as world number one to Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus after a 75-week reign.
The 22-year-old Pole had sailed into the fourth round in New York without dropping a single set in her previous three matches.
“I’m just surprised that my level changed so drastically because usually when I play bad, I play bad at the beginning, then I kind of catch up or just problem-solve,” said Swiatek after the match.
“I felt no control suddenly. I just have to watch and see, because I didn’t really know why I started making so many mistakes.”
Also on Sunday, three-time US Open title holder Djokovic thrashed qualifier Gojo of Croatia 6-2, 7-5, 6-4 to advance to the quarterfinals where he will face ninth-seeded Taylor Fritz of the United States.
“I knew Borna has a big game. I saw that he played well in the qualifying rounds,” said the 36-year-old Serbian. “I saw that he’s a big-shot player, his serve and forehand are big weapons, he moves pretty well for a big guy, so the key points for me are to neutralize his serve.”
On the same day, China’s Wang Xinyu was knocked out by the 10th seed Karolina Muchova of the Czech Republic in her maiden journey to the US Open, but soared into the women’s doubles quarterfinals with Hsieh Su-wei of Chinese Taipei.
Elsewhere, American players Ben Shelton and Frances Tiafoe also made it to the men’s quarterfinals, while Coco Gauff and Swiss player Belinda Bencic entered the women’s last eight.