Wimbledon 2023: Eubanks, Keys and Pegula surge into quarterfinals
The last three Americans still alive in singles have all made it past the fourth round and into the final eight at Wimbledon.
On Monday at the All England Club, Christopher Eubanks won a brutal five-setter against No. 5 Stefanos Tsitsipas and 25th-seeded Madison Keys took out Mirra Andreeva in three sets, to follow fourth-seeded Jessica Pegula, who won Sunday, into the quarters.
Eubanks, ranked No. 43 heading into the tournament after taking home his first ATP crown in Mallorca, has won over the crowds in SW19 and made a name for himself with American and international fans alike. The 27-year-old former Georgia Tech star notched his first Top 20 win when he beat the top Brit and world No. 13 Cameron Norrie in Round 2, followed by his first Top 5 win after he defeated Tsitsipas from two-sets-to-one down, 3-6, 7-6(4), 3-6, 6-4, 6-4.
Eubanks took his chances when he had them over the course of 3 hours and 4 minutes. After not having a single break point on Tsitsipas' serve in the first three sets, the Greek double-faulted to gift him the decisive break in the ninth game of the fourth set. In the fifth, Eubanks caught lightning in a bottle: Opening up a 0-40 lead on Tsitsipas' serve at 3-3, a cleanly-struck backhand winner down-the-line earned him the break that won him the match.
He said this run has been a “dream come true.”
“It's tough to really put into words, but to be able to come out today and play the way that I did, just kind of take everything in, it's surreal,” Eubanks said.
In the quarterfinals, the 6-foot-7 American will face off against No. 3 Daniil Medvedev, who was once the world No. 1. But while Medvedev has a US Open title and is a three-time runner-up at Grand Slams, this is his first Wimbledon quarterfinal.
On the women’s side, Keys battled back in her own win over the 16-year-old Andreeva for her ninth straight victory. This is her ninth major quarterfinal appearance, and her second at Wimbledon after first doing so in 2015.
Fresh off her Eastbourne title, Keys didn't lose a set through her first three rounds at the All England Club, but was given all she could handle by the prodigious Andreeva, who led 6-3, 4-1 and had a break point for 5-1.
It was then that Keys changed her game plan, on the on-court advice of her fiancé and fellow American pro, Bjorn Fratangelo; coming off second-best to the ultra-consistent Andreeva at the baseline, she charged the net in an effort unsettle the youngster. It worked. Five points from defeat, Keys rallied for a 3-6, 7-6(4), 6-3 triumph.
"I felt like once I started getting a little bit of momentum in that second set, I think I cleaned things up pretty well," Keys said. "I just figured I'd start charging the net and see what happened. It's a bit of reminder to me. I kind of always forget I'm not bad at the net, and I should probably get up there more often.
"I thought just try to throw her off of her game a little bit, try to get up to the net. Then it started working, so I figured I'd just keep doing it."
Overall in the Round 4 match-up, Keys hit 39 winners, won 25 net points, got more than 70% of her first serves in and only double-faulted twice.
Wimbledon is the only Slam where Keys hasn’t played in the semis, and she will have to work hard to be in the final four. Her next opponent is No. 2 seed Aryna Sabalenka, the 2023 Australian Open champion and 2023 Roland Garros semifinalist—and she’s only dropped one set at this year’s Wimbledon.
World No. 4 Pegula was the first American to punch her ticket into the quarterfinals after defeating Tsurenko, 6-1, 6-3. She cruised in 75 minutes over former World No. 23 Tsurenko, who had the distinction of being the winner of the longest-ever tiebreak in a women's Grand Slam match with her 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(18) win over Romania's Ana Bogdan in Round 3.
This is Pegula’s first time reaching the quarterfinals at the All England Club—she has now reached the quarterfinals at all four Grand Slams. But she's looking to reach her first semifinal, having gone 0-5 in major quarterfinals to date.
The Buffalo, N.Y. native will play Marketa Vondrousova—the 2019 Roland Garros runner-up—on No. 1 Court at the start of play on Tuesday, before taking on Laura Siegemund and Vera Zvonareva alongside Coco Gauff in the late afternoon in the third round of the doubles draw.
But the dynamic duo aren’t the only ones representing the stars and stripes in doubles. Also in the women's field, American Caroline Dolehide and her partner Zhang Shaui won their Monday match, launching them into the quarterfinals.
In the men's doubles draw, the four Americans remaining all were responsible for second-round upsets, and he unseeded team of American Robert Galloway and South African Lloyd Harris sprung the biggest surprise of the tournament thus far when they defeated Austin Krajicek and Croat Ivan Dodig, the No. 2-seeded team and the Roland Garros champions, 6-7(5), 7-6(3), 6-1.
Also through to Round 3 are American Reese Stalder and his Dutch partner David Pelwon, who beat No. 11 seeds Lloyd Glasspool and Nicolas Mahut in a third-set tiebreak, and the all-U.S. team of Nathaniel Lammons and Jackson Withrow, who knocked out No. 7 seeds Marcelo Arevalo and Jean-Julien Rojer.
For more from Wimbledon, visit the tournament's official website.