The favorites weren’t playing today in the women’s draw, but a few top names did play and did get through.
Former No. 1 Karolina Pliskova brushed off a Rome injury to advance over Egyptian qualifier Mayar Sherif 6-7(9), 6-2, 6-4.
Pliskova, who made the French semifinals in 2017, failed to convert eight set points in the opener, but was able to push ahead in the last two sets.
“Let’s not talk about my level,” Pliskova said after the match. “I think there is big room for improvement, but it is what it is and I’m in the next round, which counts.”
Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin has struggled in the restart, but survived Tuesday with a 6-4, 3-6, 6-3 over Liudmila Samsonova.
“I’m really happy with this win,” Kenin said. “It’s always tough to play first match at a major.
“Conditions weren’t the best. It was really tough with the courts, and it was raining and we went inside and then it started raining again. Yeah, conditions weren’t easy at all, but I’m just happy with the way I competed and found a way to win.
“I didn’t feel like I was playing my best tennis, but of course she was playing really well, but I’m just happy to have gone through the first round.”
Former finalist Sloane Stephens rolled in straights over Vitalia Diatchenko. But her countrywoman Jennifer Brady failed to serve convert match points in the third and fell to 17-year-old Clara Tauson 6-4, 3-6, 9-7 in 2 hours, 45 minutes.
“We played an amazing match today, probably the highest-quality tennis I’ve ever played in my life,” the Danish teen said. “I was just grateful to be there and just happy that I could play a girl like her on a big court. It was a dream come true, of course, and then winning the match, I don’t have any words yet. It was so great, I’ve never really experienced a match like that.”
Tauson won the Australian Open juniors earlier this year. Brady had just made the US Open semifinals.
Aryna Sabalenka, former quarterfinal Petra Martic and former champion Jelena Ostapenko also were winners.
Tomorrow, Simona Halep, Serena Williams, Victoria Azarenka and Elina Svitolina are all in action as the second round begins on Wednesday.
Serena will face Tsvetana Pironkova in a rematch of their 3-set US Open match.
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