Egyptian Tennis Star Mayar Sherif Upsets Second Seed Sabalenka at Madrid Open. Photo: Mayar Sherif official twitter account
Sabalenka proved too powerful and consistent for Sherif, who had pulled off several surprises in earlier rounds. Sherif, who turns 27 on 5 May, defeated four higher-ranked opponents including No. 30 seed Camila Giorgi and No. 5 Caroline Garcia before running into Sabalenka. Her stellar play and charismatic personality captivated fans in Madrid and back home in Egypt.
No matter the result, Sherif has secured her biggest career achievements and a huge leap in the rankings. She is guaranteed to break into the top 50 for the first time when the latest rankings are published on 10 May.
Sherif is the first Egyptian woman to reach the quarterfinals of a WTA 1000 tournament. Notably, Sherif's historic achievement is all the more impressive given that this is her first main draw appearance on clay at a WTA 1000 event.
(For more sports news and updates, follow Ahram Online Sports on Twitter at @AO_Sports and on Facebook at AhramOnlineSports.)