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Rediff.com  » Sports » US Open PIX: Sharapova, Venus roll on; Zvarev, Kyrgios, Wozniacki out

US Open PIX: Sharapova, Venus roll on; Zvarev, Kyrgios, Wozniacki out

Last updated on: August 31, 2017 13:15 IST

IMAGES of the all the action from Day 3 of the US Open played at Flushing Meadows in New York on Wednesday

Germany's Alexander Zverev returns a shot against Croatia's Borna Coric during their second round at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center

IMAGE: Germany's Alexander Zverev returns a shot against Croatia's Borna Coric during their second round at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center. Photograph: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Fourth seed Alexander Zverev had his bid for a maiden grand slam title come to a crushing end on Wednesday when Borna Coric rallied for a 3-6, 7-5, 7-6(1), 7-6(4) victory in the second round of the US Open.

 

The two 20-year-olds may be part of tennis's next generation but the German and Croat have gone toe-to-toe on court since they were youngsters.

The clash was not even the first time the two have met at Flushing Meadows with Coric beating Zverev in the US Open junior boys semi-finals on the way to winning the title in 2013.

Zverev, winner of five titles this season including in the warmup tournament in Montreal where he defeated Roger Federer in the final, looked poised to settle the score when he grabbed the opening set.

But the 61st-ranked Coric battled back to win three close sets, the last two in tie-breaks, to leave the German swinging his racquet in frustration.

Thiem demolishes De Minaur

Austria's Dominic Thiem in action against Australia's Alex de Minaur

IMAGE: Austria's Dominic Thiem in action against Australia's Alex de Minaur. Photograph: Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Austria's Dominic Thiem, the men's sixth seed, made short work of Australian Alex de Minaur after their first-round match resumed on Wednesday.

Thiem, who was two sets and a game up in the third before play was halted on Tuesday, won 6-4, 6-1, 6-1 and will face American wildcard Taylor Fritz in the second round.

The 19-year-old Fritz beat Cyprus' Marcos Baghdatis 6-4, 6-4, 6-3 to claim his first grand slam victory.

Ukranian Alexandr Dolgopolov beat German Jan-Lennard Struff  3-6, 6-3, 6-2, 1-6, 6-3 in the first round of the year's final grand slam to advance on Wednesday.

Dolgopolov,  will face 15th-seed Tomas Berdych in the second round on Thursday.

Sharapova sees off Babos to extend New York stay

Maria Sharapova in action against Timea Babos in their second round match

IMAGE: Maria Sharapova in action against Timea Babos in their second round match. Photograph: Mike Segar/Reuters

Maria Sharapova extended her grand slam comeback when the former world number one defeated Hungary's Timea Babos 6-7(4), 6-4, 6-1 on Wednesday to advance to the US Open third round.

The Russian did not have the same inspiration that helped her beat world number two Simona Halep in the opening round.

Sharapova made too many unforced errors in a scrappy first set that featured six breaks of serve.

Once she found her groove midway through the second set, however, the 30-year-old, sporting a pale peach pink crystal-encrusted dress, eventually shone like a diamond, tossing Babos aside in a one-sided decider.

The Hungarian bowed out on the second match point when she sailed a backhand long, triggering a huge roar on Arthur Ashe Stadium.

The Russian has a clear path to the semi-finals, where she could meet tournament favourite Garbine Muguruza of Spain.

Sharapova got off to a shaky start as Babos, who mixed her game perfectly with serves to the body and sliced forehands, opened a 2-0 lead.

Hungary's Timea Babos in action against Maria Sharapova

IMAGE: Hungary's Timea Babos in action against Maria Sharapova. Photograph: Mike Segar/Reuters

The Russian eventually forced a tiebreak but made a mess of a couple of forehands to hand Babos a deserved lead.

Sharapova became more vocal as she saved break points in a sixth game that proved to be the turning point of the match.

The 2006 US Open champion broke in the following game and held to clinch the second set as Babos sensed her chance was gone.

Sharapova then broke twice in the decider to move 4-1 ahead and ensure her third round place was a formality.

Although the two wins have boosted her confidence, she was not complacent as she prepares for her next match against American Sofia Kenin.

"I certainly have expectations just because I know I've been in these stages before and I've been able to execute," she said.

"There's a certain level of I know I can do this, I've done it before. I want to have that feeling again.

"But there's also the realistic understanding of 'okay, you haven't been in this situation for a while. It's going to take a little time'."

Venus Williams cruises into third round

Venus Williams celebrates after defeating France's Oceane Dodin during their second round match

IMAGE: Venus Williams celebrates after defeating France's Oceane Dodin during their second round match. Photograph: Al Bello/Getty Images

Seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams showcased a remarkable performance as she knocked out big-hitting Frenchwoman Oceane Dodin in straight sets to storm into the third round of the US Open on Wednesday.

The American tennis star, who needed three sets to get past Grand Slam debutante Viktoria Kuzmova, was much sharper against Dodin as she eased past her in a one-sided second round clash 7-5, 6-4 that lasted one hour and 28 minutes under the lights of Arthur Ashe Stadium.

Although Dodin made late pushes after falling behind 2-5 in each stage at one point of time, Williams proved too experienced as she struck 32 winners to just 14 unforced errors against the 20-year-old's 20 winners and 27 errors to come out victorious.

Venus will now cross swords with Greek star Maria Sakkari for a place in the fourth round.

The 37-year-old is bidding to clinch her third US Open crown after reaching the Wimbledon and Australian Open finals this year.

Venus, who has not won the title at Flushing Meadows since 2001, had earlier made it to her first Grand Slam final since 2009 when she slumped to a defeat at the hands of Garbine Muguruza at Wimbledon earlier this year.

A victory in the finals of the third major of the season would have made the American the oldest female Grand Slam champion in the Open era, and could see her return to top of the world rankings for the first time since July 2002.

Injured Kyrgios dumped out in first round

Nick Kyrgios

IMAGE: Nick Kyrgios holds his shoulder during his first round match. Photograph: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Nick Kyrgios could not shake off a shoulder pain or cope with his frustration as he slumped to a 6-3, 1-6, 6-4, 6-1 defeat by fellow Australian John Millman in the US Open first round on Wednesday.

The 14th seed had treatment at the beginning of the third set after levelling at 1-1, but the mercurial Kyrgios gradually appeared to lose interest in the match.

The 22-year-old received a warning for allegedly cursing and broke his racket as he produced a string of unforced errors at Louis Armstrong Stadium.

After conceding defeat on the first match point, Kyrgios wished good luck to Millman, who next faces Tunisia's Malek Jaziri or Brazilian Thiago Monteiro.

Murguruza relieved to advance to third round

Spain's Gabrine Muguruza

IMAGE: Spain's Gabrine Muguruza. Photograph: Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza reached the US Open third round for the first time by beating China's 92nd-ranked Duan Ying-Ying 6-4, 6-0.

"I had like a curse and I broke it finally. I'm so happy," Muguruza said.

"I just put the heart on the court. I knew I had to be all the time fighting for the ball and in the end I won."

Beating Slovakian 31st seed Magdalena Rybarikova to reach the last 16 would make the Spanish third seed the leader in a seven-woman fight for world number one.

Kuznetsova survives Vondrousova challenge

Russia's Svetlana Kuznetsova shows her frustration during her match against Czech Republic's Marketa Vondrousova

IMAGE: Russia's Svetlana Kuznetsova shows her frustration during her match against Czech Republic's Marketa Vondrousova. Photograph: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Eighth-seeded Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova saved three match points before securing a 4-6 6-4 7-6(2) first-round victory over Czech Marketa Vondrousova.

Poland's Agnieszka Radwanska, seeded 10th, secured a place in the second round with a 6-4 7-6(3) win over Croatian Petra Matic.

Fourth seed Svitolina lost a second-set tiebreak against unseeded Czech Katerina Siniakova after their match resumed with the Ukrainian having won the first set.

Svitolina went down a break in the decider but rallied to win 6-0 6-7(5) 6-3.

American CoCo Vandeweghe came back from a set down to claim a 2-6 6-3 6-4 first-round victory over compatriot Alison Riske.

Vandeweghe, coached by 1987 Wimbledon champion Pat Cash, fired 31 winners to book a second-round meeting with Tunisia's Ons Jabeur.

Eugenie Bouchard was back on centre court at the US Open on Wednesday, the United States Tennis Association saying it held no grudges against the Canadian who is suing the organisation for negligence over injuries suffered in a locker-room fall.

Usually the marquee matchups of the day are reserved for Arthur Ashe Stadium and a contest between two players barely ranked inside the top 100 seemed an unconventional choice -- even more so given the lawsuit now before the courts.

"I was surprised," admitted the 76th-ranked Bouchard following a 7-6(2), 6-1 thrashing by 89th-ranked Russian Evgeniya Rodina.

"But it's always an amazing opportunity to play on the biggest tennis court in the world."

Dimitrov eases past Safranek

Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov plays a return against Czech Republic's Vaclav Safranek

IMAGE: Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov plays a return against Czech Republic's Vaclav Safranek. Photograph: Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Seventh seed Grigor Dimitrov recorded 22 winners on his way to a 6-1, 6-4, 6-2 first-round victory over Czech Vaclav Safranek.

Cincinnati winner Dimitrov is one of the favourites for the title this fortnight but has failed to progress past the fourth round in six previous appearances at Flushing Meadows.

Frenchman Gael Monfils, seeded 18, beat compatriot Jeremy Chardy 7-6(6), 6-3, 6-4 to reach the second round.

Monfils, a semi-finalist last year, will meet American Donald Young in the next round.

Argentinean Juan Martin del Potro kicked off his campaign with a 6-4, 7-6(3), 7-6(5) win over Swiss Henri Laaksonen.

Del Potro, the 2009 winner, will meet Spaniard Adrian Menendez-Maceiras in the second round.

Ninth seed David Goffin needed over two hours to see off France's Julien Benneteau 6-4, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2 in the first round.

Italian Stefano Travaglia beat 22nd seed Fabio Fognini 6-4, 7-6(8), 3-6 6-0 in the first round.

Tsonga stunned by qualifier Shapovalov

 Canada's Denis Shapovalov celebrates during his second round match against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga

IMAGE: Canada's Denis Shapovalov celebrates during his second round match against France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. Photograph: Andrew Kelly/Reuters

Canadian 18-year-old qualifier Denis Shapovalov defeated French eighth seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-4, 6-4, 7-6 (7/3) to book a third-round date with Britain's Kyle Edmund.

"It's a dream come true for me," Shapovalov said.

Shapovalov became the youngest man in the third round of a Grand Slam since Bernard Tomic at the 2011 Australian Open and at the US Open since American Donald Young in 2007.

Makarova sends out Wozniacki

Russia's Ekaterina Makarova hits a backhand against Denmark's Caroline Wozniacki

IMAGE: Russia's Ekaterina Makarova hits a backhand against Denmark's Caroline Wozniacki. Photograph: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Ekaterina Makarova sent Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki packing with a 6-2, 6-7(5), 6-1 victory in two hours and 20 minutes at the US Open.

5th seed Wozniacki surprisingly lost to 40th-ranked Makarova in the second round.

Four of the top seven women are out of the field just three days into the two-week tournament.

Wozniacki follows first-round losers No. 2 Simona Halep, No. 6 Angelique Kerber and No. 7 Johanna Konta

Mladenovic continues in free fall

Kristina Mladenovic

IMAGE: Kristina Mladenovic returns a shot. Photograph: Al Bello/Getty Images

Kristina Mladenovic was tipped as a French Open favourite three months ago but after a fall at Wimbledon the Frenchwoman has experienced a painful form slump that resulted in a first-round exit at the US Open.

Mladenovic, who reached the quarter-finals in Paris on the back of an impressive claycourt campaign, suffered a knee injury at the All England Club.

Things went from bad to worse for the hard-hitting Mladenovic, who appeared toothless in three consecutive first-round defeats at U.S. Open warm-up tournaments.

"There are highs and lows in a season. I had a complicated Wimbledon where I pulled a ligament in my right knee," said 14th seed Mladenovic, who lost 6-3, 6-2 to Romanian Monica Nicolescu on Wednesday.

"I needed a rest after that fall but then it was not easy to come back to form for the American tournaments.

"It's frustrating, but it's part of an athlete's life ... it's a process."

Monica Niculescu

IMAGE: Monica Niculescu in action. Photograph: Al Bello/Getty Images

Mladenovic, who showed signs of frustration on court, refused to blame her fall.

"Wimbledon is in the past, it's not why I lost today," the 24-year-old said.

"Physically, I'm in good shape, but it was not enough. I would have needed a round or two to get things started again."

Mladenovic is confident she will soon get back to her best level as she has shaken off her injury and she will not change her schedule.

"I was really bad in the previous weeks, sometimes I was not comfortable on court. Even if it was not enough today, I have been better," she said.

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