earn Day 3 French Open wins
Ashley Marshall | May 28, 2019
Rising American teen Amanda Anisimova continues to break new ground in 2019. On Tuesday in Paris, she continued that journey into uncharted territory.
Anisimova defeated Harmony Tan of France, 6-3, 6-1, to move into the second round of the French Open for the first time in her young career.
Entering the 2019 season, Anisimova was ranked No. 95 in the world with an 0-2 record at the Grand Slam level. But she had a breakout run in Melbourne in January, defeating Monica Niculescu, No. 24 seed Lesia Tsurenko and 11th-seeded Aryna Sabalenka in reaching the fourth round. Anisimova ultimately fell to two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova, but the run saw her power up the rankings while adding to her comfort level on the biggest stage.
On Tuesday, that confidence was on full display. Now ranked a career-high No. ADVERTISEMENT 51, Anisimova broke Tan three times in the opening set and twice more in the second in opening up a 4-0 advantage. That margin was more than enough for the American to wrap up a solid opening-round victory.
Anisimova won 78 percent of points on her first serve, recorded 24 winners to 16 unforced errors and saved two of the three points she faced in sauntering into Round 2.
The 17-year-old New Jersey native last competed in the main draw of the French Open in 2017, when she lost to Kurumi Nara of Japan in the opening round, 3-6, 7-5, 6-4. But with more experience and maturity than two years ago, Anisimova knows she has the tools to grind it out on the dirt with the best of them. A title run in Bogota, Colombia, in April strengthened her clay-court credentials, now she'll look for a deep run in a section of the draw that has already lost seeds Mihaela Buzarnescu and Anett Kontaveit.
Anisimova will play Sabalenka in the second round in an Australian Open rematch, after the Belarussian defeated Dominika Cibulkova of Slovakia, 7-5, 6-1. The winner of that match is set to face either Irina-Camilia Begu of Romania or Karolina Muchova of the Czech Republic in the Round of 32.
Joining Anisimova in the second round is Madison Keys, the No. 14 seed who made light work of Evgeniya Rodina, 6-1, 6-2, in just 56 minutes on Court Suzanne-Lenglen.
The 24-year-old, who trains at the USTA National Campus in Orlando, Fla., reached the semifinals in Paris 12 months ago as part of a dominant season that saw her reach two semifinals and one quarterfinal. The 2017 US Open finalist will play Aussie Priscilla Hon in Round 2. But fellow American Anna Tatishvili lost to Greek No. 29 seed Maria Sakkari, 6-0, 6-1.
The lone U.S. winner on the men’s side on Tuesday was Taylor Fritz, who toppled Bernard Tomic of Australia, 6-1, 6-4, 6-1. His reward is a second-round clash with No. 18 seed Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain, who defeated Steve Johnson, 6-3, 6-4, 6-2.
"I'm going to have to play very well," Fritz said of his second-round matchup. "I played very good, I thought, in Lyon and just barely got it done. So I know what I have to do. And if I can perform at the level I know I need to perform at, I feel confident winning, but it's not easy to play that well, you know. So, yeah, I feel confident that if I do what I need to do, I can win again and go to the next round.
"I didn't actually realize it was my first [main-draw win] here until they told me afterward. I wasn't really thinking about that because I've been doing pretty well so far on the clay. So I'm pretty confident that I can play on clay, so I didn't really need a win here to validate it. I think a win at any other ATP tournament is just as tough as getting a win here. It's all about just the week. The people you play every single week at the ATP events are all people you could play at a Grand Slam, so it's really every win is the same. But it's nice to get my first win here, and I'm looking forward to trying to keep it going."
Elsewhere on Day 3, Mackenzie McDonald lost to Yoshihito Nishioka of Japan, 6-7, 6-0, 4-6, 6-2, 6-3. Doubles action also got underway on Tuesday, with No. 7 seeds Mike and Bob Bryan rallying to beat Pablo Carreno Busta and Gerard Granollers of Spain, 5-7, 6-2, 6-3.
After going 1-4 on Sunday, 6-9 on Monday and 3-3 on Tuesday, Team USA will have 10 singles players in the second round, which begins Wednesday.
Day 4 in Paris is headlined by No. 7 seed Sloane Stephens against Sara Sorribes Tormo of Spain and Lauren Davis against No. 26 seed Johanna Konta of Great Britain. Also in action is Jennifer Brady against Polona Hercog and Shelby Rogers against No. 28 seed Carla Suarez Navarro. Men's and women's doubles also continues first-round play.