Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Upsets abound on the third day of the Volvo Car Open

clockwise: Julia Goerges, Camila Giorgi, Kristyna Pkiskova, Kiki Bertens
(all photos by Daniel Ward)

Today, in Charleston, in 2nd round play, 2nd seed Petra Kvitova--making her first appearance at the Volvo Car Open--was defeated 1-6, 6-1, 6-3 by countrywoman Kristyna Pliskova, and 6th seed Johanna Konta was upset in straight sets by qualifier Fanny Stollar. Also going out was 11th seed Daria Gavrilova, who was sent home by always-dangerous Camila Giorgi.

A few seeded players had to fight hard for their victories. Kristie Ahn took 5th seed Julia Goerges to three sets, and Goerges won the match in a third set tiebreak (7-1). 8th seed Anastasija Sevastova also had to go to three sets, but defeated Caroline Dolehide 7-5, 6-7, 6-1. And Tatjana Maria took 9th seed Ash Barty to three sets.

Laura Siegemund, whose performances at the Volvo Car Open have been nothing short of stunning the past two years, chose Charleston to make her return to the tour after having to take almost a year off following a serious knee injury. Siegemund won her first round, but lost her second round to Indian Wells champion Naomi Osaka. Osaka defeated Siegemund 6-3, 7-6, and the second set tiebreak (10-8) was a thrilling one.

12th seed Kiki Bertens defeated an injured Alex Krunic in straight sets, and two-time finalist Elena Vesnina, who is seeded 16th, defeated Taylor Townsend 6-4, 6-1.

Of interest tomorrow: Two Frenchwomen--top seed Caroline Garcia and 14th seed Alize Cornet--compete against one another in the featured night match. And first on the Volvo Car Stadium's Billie Jean King Court is a match I'm expecting to be exceptional: 5th seed Julia Goerges vs. 10th seed Naomi Osaka. Also, defending champion and 3rd seed Daria Kasatkina will face 13th seed Irina-Caelia Begu.

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