Monday witnessed the start of the 2017 US Open with the bottom half of the women’s draw in action. One day in and i’m already a wreck at trying to keep up with everything. Unfortunately it wasn’t a fun day for me with watching tennis as I haven’t been able to log into my Eurosport Player account. After they updated my app, I was logged out and couldn’t get back in! I’ve reset my password about 20 times, but it is still telling me that it is an invalid password. Safe to say i’m mega frustrated – very disappointed in Eurosport!
A few highlights from Monday…
The most anticipated match from the first round delivered and then some as Maria Sharapova maintained her 100% record over Simona Halep with a 6-4 4-6 6-3 victory in two hours and 42 minutes.
I was gutted to miss the match – sadly I need sleep to get through the remainder of this week! I was very confused when I woke up though because I had dreamt I was in New York and had looked up at a scoreboard to see Sharapova had retired early in a third set ha! I’m thrilled the match lived up to expectation but man, I feel for Simona.
Two of the top eight seeds have gone after day 1 as Aleksandra Krunic produced a superb display to defeat the number seven seed, Johanna Konta in three sets. For a recap and review of the match, check out my post below.
The number three seed, Garbiñe Muguruza began her US Open campaign with a mostly convincing 6-0 6-3 victory over Varvara Lepchenko in the first match on Arthur Ashe Stadium. There were some pretty gruelling rallies in the second set as Lepchenko managed to get back on level terms from a break down. However, Muguruza soon refocused, shooting big groundstrokes into the corners and charging the net when the opportunity arose. Muguruza won the last eight points of the match to set up a second rounder against Duan Ying-Ying.
Venus Williams needed three sets to get past the talented qualifier, Viktoria Kuzmova, 6-3 3-6 6-2. I was so impressed with how Kuzmova closed out the second set with some massive serving. Williams’s experience prevailed in the decider as she held onto her early break, staving off danger on serve, saving break points at *2-0 (from *0-40 down) and *4-2.
The number 13 seed, Petra Kvitova beat Jelena Jankovic, 7-5 7-5, in the first match on the new temporary Louis Armstrong stadium court. Jankovic had rallied from 2-5 down in the first set to get back to 5-5 and then served for the second set at *5-4. However, JJ’s nerves and lack of decisiveness at the ends of both sets, something that has characterised her 2017 season, were a key factor in the outcome of this match. Kvitova found some nice forehands late on to wrap up the win in straights.
An update on JJ.
Another player struggling in the key moments and also going down in a 7-5 7-5 scoreline was Lauren Davis – the number 32 seed suffered her seventh consecutive loss on tour as the wild card, Sofia Kenin scored a first ever Slam main draw win, fighting back from a break down in both sets. While Kenin competed superbly, she was given quite a helping hand from an out-of-sorts, Davis who failed to take advantage of two set points when attempting to serve out the second set.
Two other seeded upsets on day 1 – Maria Sakkari beat the number 24 seed, Kiki Bertens, 6-3 6-4 and Ash Barty defeated the number 21 seed, Ana Konjuh, 4-6 6-0 6-1.
Alizé Cornet held firm and served out a straight sets win over Heather Watson, 6-4 6-4. The Brit is now 0-6 in first round matches at the US Open.
Julia Goerges continued her superb recent form, dropping just one game against Annika Beck. A nice moment at the net!
Sloane Stephens also maintained her superb recent form with a 7-5 6-1 win over former finalist, Roberta Vinci.
An update on Roberta!
And finally, the Bank Holiday weekend was a baking extravaganza!
13 thoughts on “Monday’s Set Points, US Open Day 1: Sharapova beats Halep, Muguruza safely into R2”
Caroline Garcia also started her campaign with a thumping 60 61 victory against Martincova. I haven’t been able to find any highlights but her stats were very impressive. She faces a tough challenge next against Alexanderova, who beat Garcia last year when Caroline was defending her title at Limoges.
On Halep and Sharapova… I’m disappointed that Maria is through personally. I do find their post match comments hilarious, because Maria was trying to be very complimentary towards Simona and Halep did not return the favour, in particular frowning upon the lengthy bathroom break saying ‘she does it all the time’.
Andrew, it’s not a secret that Simona doesn’t like Maria – when she was asked on TV about Maria’s use of meldonium and asked whether she was going to discuss it with her, Simona said, “We didn’t talk before, so we’re not going to start now (at the end of this clip).”
I’m disappointed too; I really wanted Simona to win, but you can’t argue with a 6-0 record on past meetings.
To be fair, pretty much every top player had the same to say about Masha.
I don’t personally see Maria going on to win the title here. I could see Barty, Goerges or Sevastova taking advantage of the bottom quarter. And it’s hard to look past Venus or Wozniacki making the finals based on how they’ve played this year.
I wanted to Simona to win too. She’s had some brutal losses of late and this would have been huge for her.
‘ when she was asked on TV about Maria’s use of meldonium and asked whether she was going to discuss it with her, Simona said, “We didn’t talk before, so we’re not going to start now (at the end of this clip).”
FYI Meldonium has been a legal medicinal drug for nearly 40 years…maria sharapova has used it for 10..noone ever complained about meldonium till recently nor demanded Maria stop using it. Meldonium was banned cause USADA needed a way to attack russia athletes, after Russia foiled US attack on Syria 2013 and crimea rejoined russia 2014.
‘Almost exactly two years after USADA FIRST heard about the drug, Sharapova was announcing in a Los Angeles hotel that she had tested positive for it’
side note, US have no problen with athkletes using Creatine
Never really seen Krunic play before and I gotta say I like her style.
I tend to like the more defensive players – Woz, Halep, Elina – but I could definitely see myself rooting for her in the future if she manages to be more consistent. If she could cut down on those unforced forehand errors, she could be a force to be reckoned with – super fast, touch, easy power and confident in the forecourt.
She made the fourth round here a few years ago after upsetting Kvitova. She just never really did much after that. She seems to be putting it together now though… I read that she she won a 125k event on clay in June and made the final of a $100k ITF event on grass the following week.
I dislike the #2 seed being knocked out in the first round by a wildcard. Halep may never get to be number one because of the obsolete draw format used in the Grand Slam(GS) tournaments. Halep worked all year to be the #2 seed and now gets eliminated mainly by bad luck. This possible match should have taken place in the 3rd or 4th round.
I have developed a draw format which rewards the hard working top ranked players. There are 128 players in the main GS draw, 106 ranked players and 16 qualies and 6 wildcards, with 64 matches in the first round.
The Ziggy2shus New Millennium Grand Slam Draw Format
The top 64 ranked players would be seeded.
The top ranked players 1-20 would play the bottom ranked players 106-86 (20 matches).
The 21 thru 64 seeds would play alternate remaining bottom ranked player and Q/WC players. There are 22 Q/WCs and 44 matches to fill. The #21 would play #85, #22 would play a Q/WC, #23 would play #84, #24 would play a Q/WC etc.,etc.,etc. A draw would place the Q/WC players in their position.
I expect the GS management to adopt this new draw format within micro-seconds after reading it—– or perhaps slightly longer.
Ha! I’m not sure I agree with 64 seeds but I am intrigued.
Intrigued must mean that The Moo is 112.83675% in favor of the new Grand Slam Draw Format.
Halep should have taken care of business, not feeling sorry for her. Serena always had to play top seeds in the first round who became unseeded because of injuries. She always had to play Azaranka in the 2nd or 3rd round. Azaranka got mad and complaint about it.
And actually the first few rounds of a women’s Slam are usually so much more entertaining than the mens because the top players are actually challenged. You rarely see Nadal or Federer or Djokovic having a real battle in the first two rounds.