17 January 2020

Britain's Heather Watson loses to Elena Rybakina in three-set thriller in Hobart International semi-final

British No 2 female tennis player Heather Watson has been knocked out of the Hobart International in three sets, 3-6, 6-4, 4-6, by Kazakhstan's Elena Rybakina.

Watson, 27, who reached the tournament through qualifiers and beat Belgium's Elise Mertens on Thursday, took the match all the way against the No 3 seed but could not get over the line in the final set.

In a match rich in powerful hitting and tight angles, Rybakina clinched the first set but the hardy Brit fought back in the second, claiming it after a serve out wide forced the Kazakh's return.

The final set saw dazzling shots from both players, including some scintillating drop shots from Rybakina who seemed keen to justify her seeding. 

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