Jelena Ostapenko claims US Open organizers told her the WRONG start time for Coco Gauff quarterfinal- leaving her scrambling to prepare for a 12pm start before losing in 68 minutes
Jelena Ostapenko hit out at US Open organizers following her quarterfinal defeat by Coco Gauff, claiming they made a ‘crazy’ late change to the schedule which favored the home hope.
Ostapenko claimed she was told after her win over world No 1 Iga Swiatek on Sunday that she would be playing on Tuesday night. Instead she and Gauff were first on at around midday – barely 36 hours after the climax of her three-set win over Swiatek.
Gauff, by contrast, finished her last-16 win over Caroline Wozniacki shortly before 5.30pm on Sunday.
Two days later, the American dropped only two games en route to a first US Open semifinal, taking just one hour and eight minutes to triumph on Arthur Ashe Stadium.
‘I think it’s a little bit crazy,’ said Ostapenko, who claimed she struggled to sleep until around 6am on Monday and had not recovered by Tuesday’s quarterfinal.
Jelena Ostapenko hit out at US Open organizers following her defeat by Coco Gauff
The American teenager dropped only two games en route to a first US Open semifinal
‘I was pretty sure I’m gonna play at night session, because that’s what they told me. When the schedule came out, I saw I’m playing first match and was: “Wow, that’s a little bit strange scheduling”… when I saw the schedule I was a little bit surprised, not in a really good way.’
She added: ‘You never know with the people who are doing schedule, sometimes you feel like you better not ask anything.
‘Because sometimes it’s working your way or sometimes it’s working against you completely… so I think it was better for her the schedule, because obviously she played much earlier the day I played night session.’
A tournament spokesperson denied her assertion that she had been told she would not play until later.
Ostapenko made 36 unforced errors as she struggled to lay a glove on Gauff on Tuesday afternoon.
The Latvian said her problem was not physical tiredness. Rather she struggled to recharge fully following victory over Swiatek.
‘I was pretty sure I’m gonna play at night, because that’s what they told me,’ Ostapenko said
‘Today was not really good match from me. I think it’s really hard to recover from those night matches, because after beating the world No 1, I went to sleep at like five in the morning,’ she said.
‘You sleep for maybe seven, eight hours, but you completely don’t recover. Yesterday the whole day I felt very low energy. I thought today I was going to wake up and feel better. But honestly, I didn’t really feel much better.’
Ostapenko explained: ‘I didn’t really feel physically very tired, but I felt like I didn’t really recover from that night. Because I got back to the hotel around 2:00 a.m. and even I tried to go to sleep at 3:00 in the morning but I had all this adrenaline and it was impossible to fall asleep.
‘Then when you go to sleep at 5:00 or 6:00 in the morning, the whole day where you need a few days just to recover. I think it’s a little bit crazy.’