Serena Williams advanced to the quarterfinals of the 2019 U.S. Open after defeating Petra Martic in straight sets 6-3, 6-4.
Williams rolled her ankle in the second set and required a brief medical timeout in order to have the ankle re-taped.
She now has 52 quarterfinal appearances in Grand Slam tournaments, the third-most for a female player in the Open Era, per ESPN.
Williams had another reason to celebrate as her daughter, Alexis Olympia, turned two Sunday.
Williams and Martic went back and forth to start the match, with the two players holding serve in each of the first seven games. Serena earned a break in the eighth game to go up 5-3. She secured the opening set with an expertly placed forehand drop shot.
The second set was basically a repeat of the first. Martic did well to hold off Williams while on serve but couldn't make a dent with her return game. A break in the fifth game was the opening Serena needed to seal the win and move on.
The ankle injury provided a bit of drama as Williams briefly remained seated on the court. The same injury—albeit to the opposite ankle—preceded her quarterfinal exit to Karolina Pliskova in the 2019 Australian Open.
Upon receiving treatment, though, her performance level didn't drop.
According to the U.S. Open's official site, Williams had a 38-11 edge in winners and covered 387 fewer feet than Martic over the course of the match. She set the tone from the baseline and used her first serve (30-of-38 points won) to keep the 28-year-old Croat on the defensive.
Williams will meet Qiang Wang in the quarterfinals. The two have never faced off at a WTA event.
Wang upset second-seeded Ashleigh Barty 6-2, 6-4 in the fourth round.