Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Shelby Rogers thrills the home crowd

photo by Daniel Ward
Shelby Rogers, who used to be a ballgirl for the Family Circle Cup (now the Volvo Car Open) won her opening round in Charleston today on Billie Jean King Court in the tournament's stadium. Rogers defeated qualifer Veronica Cepede Royg 6-7, 6-3, 7-6 in a match that lasted over two hour and 42 minutes. Rogers' next opponent will be Naomi Osaka, who also had to endure a three-setter in her victory over Johanna Larsson.

Maria Sakkari (photo by Daniel Ward)

14th Lauren Davis didn't fare as well as Rogers. Davis fell, 7-5, 6-4, to Maria Sakkari, whose second serve gave her a distinct advantage; Davis's second serve, on the other hand, was part of her downfall.

Daria Kasatkina (photo by Daniel Ward)
Also among today's winners was Daria Kasatkina, who reached the quarterfinals last year before losing to eventual champion Sloane Stephens. Today, Kasatkina (who is unseeded this year), defeated Danka Kovinic 6-1, 6-2.

Spectators at the Althea Gibson Club Court had a treat today when 11th seed
Mirjana Lucic-Baroni (photo by Daniel Ward)
Mirjana Lucic-Baroni faced off against Aleksandra Krunic. Lucic-Baroni, who has a Kuznetsova-like tendency to wind up in long, grinding matches, defeated her friend Krunic 6-1, 4-6, 6-3. It was a well-played match by both women. Now, Lucic-Baroni--whose run to the Australian Open semifinals was the most dramatic story on the women's side--will face Mona Barthel, who knows her way around a clay court.

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