Keys digs deep to beat Kenin and reach last 16

Aug 30, 2019; Flushing, NY, USA; Madison Keys of the USA celebrates match point against Sofia Kenin of the USA the third round on day five of the 2019 U.S. Open tennis tournament at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Madison Keys overcame a health scare in the second set to reach the last 16 at the U.S. Open for a fifth consecutive year with a 6-3 7-5 win over fellow American Sofia Kenin on Friday.

The American 10th seed used a serving masterclass to breeze through the first set but her game noticeably dropped off in the second where she had her pulse and blood pressure checked while trailing 4-3.

But Keys, who fell to Sloane Stephens in the 2017 final and to eventual champion Naomi Osaka in last year’s semi-final, returned to the court and eventually got the decisive break in the 11th game before serving out the match.

“Just not feeling 100% tonight but really glad I was able to get through in two (sets), it would have been a lot trickier if I had to go another set,” Keys said.

“This was definitely a test but I’m really happy I was able to mentally get myself up.”

Keys, who beat Kenin in a semi-final clash two weeks ago in Cincinnati, turned aside each of the eight break points she faced in the match, including a pair in the final game.

Up next for Keys will be Ukrainian fifth seed Elina Svitolina, who crushed Dayana Yastremska 6-2 6-0 earlier on Friday.

Editing by Peter Rutherford

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