Iga Swiatek has called for an end to online abuse after receiving hateful messages following her win over Zheng Qinwen at the Cincinnati Open.
World number one Swiatek won 3-6 6-1 6-1 but received criticism after dropping the first set of the last-16 encounter.
The 22-year-old Pole appeared angry in his post-match news conference as he responded to the abuse.
“The amount of hate and criticism my team and I got after losing a set was ridiculous,” Swiatek said.
“I want to encourage people to be more thoughtful when they comment on the internet.
“We all sacrificed a lot. We all worked hard to be in that place. We always give 100% of what we can every day.
“It’s sad for me to see that the people I work with, and myself, really judge us.”
World number five Ons Jabeur, who reached the quarter-finals after opponent Donna Vekic retired due to illness after falling 5-2 in the first set, said most of the abuse was aimed at tennis players. comes from people who bet on the game.
“Honestly, you win, you lose, you get hate messages no matter what you do,” Jabeur said.
“We need more people, better people on this earth but I don’t think you can change the mindset of some for the better.
“They have nothing to do with their lives and they spend money on you and maybe, what, they lost a couple of money when Iga lost a set.”
US Open champion Swiatek, who is the top seed, will face Wimbledon champion and 10th seed Marketa Vondrousova in the quarter-finals after her victory over Zheng of China.
Zheng took a surprise 3-0 lead in windy conditions but was broken in the fourth game to give Swiatek a lifeline.
However, the 20-year-old held his nerve to break the four-time Grand Slam winner again and claim the first set.
But Swiatek quickly regained her composure – swapping her white dress for a black one – and swept the second two sets in quick time.
Swiatek said his coach suggested the outfit change a few months ago as a way to “reset” and go into the second set “with a different vibe”.
He added: “I thought it was bad [idea] but i tried this time and it worked, so thanks coach.
Czech Vondrousova, 24, defeated American Sloane Stephens, 7-5, 6-3 in their last-16 tie.
Meanwhile, the American world number three Jessica Pegulawho won the Canadian Open title last week, is out after losing 4-6 0-6 to the Czech Republic’s Marie Bouzkova.
Earlier, world number four Elena Rybakina – the 2022 Wimbledon champion – retired after leading 6-4 2-5 in his match against Jasmine Paolini, sent the Italian qualifier to the last eight.
America’s seventh seed Coco Gauff beat Linda Noskova of the Czech Republic 6-4 6-0, Greece’s Maria Sakkari advanced with a 3-6 6-2 6-3 win over the Czech Karolina Muchova and second seed Belarus Aryna Sabalenka defeated the Russian Daria Kasatkina 6-3 6-3.