A week before the United States Championships, the first major after a 6-month hiatus due to Corona, veteran American Serena Williams qualified with great difficulty at the expense of Dutch Arancha Ross, within the women’s competitions in the competition ranked between the five Premieres.
After his return to the stadiums, following the scandal of the Adria tournament in the Balkans that he organized and was infected with the Corona virus, Djokovic (33 years old) narrowly overtook Lithuanian Ricardas Perankis 7-6 (7-2) and 6-4.
Noley, who withdrew from the doubles competition due to a pain in his neck, lost his service at the start of each set, but was quickly replaced and needed a Tai Break tiebreak to clinch the first.
“My game is gradually improving. Not where I want to go, but things are in the right direction,” said the 17 major championship holder who is meeting the American Tennis Sandgren in the third round.
As for the Austrian Teim, Djokovic’s presumptive competitor in Flushing Meadows, he fell into a big fall to Serbian Philippe Krajnovic 1-6, 2-6.
“It was a terrible match on my part,” said second seeded Tim, who played his first match in five months. “I had a lot of difficulty responding and I missed the rhythm.”
Murray and the fond memories
Britain’s Andy Murray (33 years), the former world number one and returning from the hell of injuries, proved that he can still face the front players after beating German Zverev 6-3 3-6 7-5.
Murray, the defending champion in 2008 and 2011, was 4-5 behind in the third set, but Zverev made 4 double faults on his serve to settle the Scottish game.
“He did not send well in the end, and this helped me a lot, but I fought hard,” said Murray, who fell to 129th in the world after two hip surgeries in January 2018 and January 2019.
Murray, who won his first victory over a player among the top ten since May 2017, meets Canadian Milos Raonic, who beat Britain’s Daniel Evans 6-3 7-5.
Russia’s third-seeded champion Daniel Medvedev reached the final price, beating American Marcus Giron 6-4, 6-4.
This was the first match that Medvedev played since late February, after a hiatus of nearly 6 months due to the pandemic, and he next meets with Slovenian Alejaz Biden, who beat American Taylor Fritz 7-6 (7/5) and 4-5.
“I sent well and I’m happy to win, especially against a competitor who played three games,” the 24-year-old Russian said after the victory.
He continued, “I did not play well from the back line, but I had two chances to break the service. There are a lot of things that I must improve, but I will do that in the next round.”
Medvedev broke his opponent’s service in the fifth game of the first set to settle in his favor 6-4, while he broke the American service in the third half of the second, to go ahead and settle the meeting.
Medvedev did not lose his serve in the match and saved three chances to break in front of empty stands at the Billie Jean King National Complex.
The Russian reached six consecutive finals in 2019, during which he won two Masters tournaments (Cincinnati and Shanghai, China), while losing the “Flushing Meadows” final after a marathon match against Spain’s Rafael Nadal that lasted five sets.
Difficult win for Williams
Among the women, American third seed Serena Williams struggled to outperform Ross 7-6 (8/6), 3-6 and 7-6 (7/0), and she is avoiding an early surprise.
Williams, the 23-major championship holder who ranks ninth in the world rankings, struck 14 aces that helped her win two hours and 48 minutes later.
“I try to remember when I last played a game that lasted three hours. It was tough and very physical,” said Williams, 38.
Williams saved a point to settle the first set in the tiebreak before settling in her favor, achieving her second victory over her opponent in only the second meeting between them, after Wimbledon 2018.
The Cincinnati title holder in 2014 and 2015 will next play with Greece’s Maria Sakkari, who beat Kazakhstan’s Yulia Putintseva 6-4 7-6.
With the absence of many first-row players due to “Covid-19” fears and the early exit of Sophia Keenen, ranked fourth in the world and Czech Karolina Pleshkova, ranked third in the world, Williams became the highest ranked in the tournament.
Like Serena, fourth-seeded Japanese Naomi Osaka struggled to beat Czech Karolina Muchova 6-7 (5-7), 6-4, 6-2, striking a date with young Ukrainian Diana Yastrymska.
Czech Marie Bozkova eliminated her compatriot Petra Kvitova, ranked 12th in the world and holder of the Wimbledon title in 2011 and 2014, by surprising victories 2-6, 7-5, 6-2 in two hours and 25 minutes.
Tunisian Anas Jaber achieved a remarkable result by defeating American champion Madison Keys, the seventh seed, 6-4, 6-1. Dr
Jaber will meet in the third round, another American qualifier, Christina McHale.