Pegula achieves a difficult comeback, Sakkari also wins

Pegula achieves a difficult comeback, Sakkari also wins
Pegula achieves a difficult comeback, Sakkari also wins

* Updated after Jaqueline Cristian’s victory over Madison Keys at the end of the round

Charleston (USA) – Top seed at the WTA 500 in Charleston, Jessica Pegula achieved a difficult comeback in her first match of the clay season. The current world number 5 won a North American duel against Amanda Anisimova 3/6, 6/4 and 7/6 (7-3) in 2h26 of play this Tuesday.

“It was a battle, but it’s important to be able to win games like this early. This helps you if you are in the same situation in the final stages of the tournament”, said Pegula in the interview on Wednesday after the match. “She started very well, she is a super talented player. I know she has had some health issues and I hope she comes back stronger. I have no doubt that she can play great tennis and be among the top players, but I managed to control my nerves at the end of the game.”

The game had four breaks for each side and Pegula fired seven aces. She made fewer winners in the match, 30 compared to Anisimova’s 42, but made only 11 errors compared to her rival’s 34. Her next rival is Poland’s Magda Linette, who defeated Ukraine’s Dayana Yastremska 0/6, 6/4 and 6/3. Anisimova, 22 years old and former number 21 in the world, was away from the circuit between May last year and January this year to take care of her mental health. The young tennis player currently occupies 264th place.

Another top 10 winner in the round was Maria Sakkari. But the Greek advanced more calmly. Third seed and number 7 in the world, she beat Bulgarian Viktoriya Tomova by double 6/3 in just 1h20. Much more aggressive on the court than her opponent, she led the winners count by 25 to 12. Her next rival could be Australian Astra Sharma or Ukrainian Lesia Tsurenko.

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“It was my first game of the year on clay and the first in Charleston since 2019, on green clay. I’m very happy to be back. The first set was very difficult. She played a match yesterday and was more used to the conditions. The transition from hard court to clay is always difficult. The first matches are always complicated, it wasn’t my tennis, but I’m happy to have advanced”, said Sakkari about his start to the clay season.

Keys is eliminated on debut, Kasatkina meets rival
In the match that ended Tuesday’s round, American Madison Keys suffered a tough upset. Champion of the tournament in 2019 and 18th in the ranking, Keys was surpassed by Romanian Jaqueline Cristian, 83rd placed, with splits of 3/6, 6/3 and 6/3 in 2 hours of play. Cristian will certainly face another local tennis player in the round of 16, Emma Navarro or Katie Volynets. Already in a delayed game of the first phase, the 19-year-old North American and 73rd in the ranking Ashlyn Krueger beat the Romanian Gabriela Lee by 7/6 (7-0) and 6/3. She guarantees the duel against Russian Daria Kasatkina, seed 4 and champion of the tournament in 2017.

Read more:

Bia will face Dolehide, 47th in the world, in her debut in Charleston

Champion in Miami, Collins starts well on the clay in Charleston

The article is in Portuguese

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