Adelaide International 1: Maria Sakkari, Elena Rybakina notch 2022 season’s 1st wins

Maria Sakkari won the first match of the 2022 season at the Adelaide International 1 on Monday. The Greek defeated Tamara Zidansek 6-2, 0-6, 6-4 in two hours and five minutes.

“I didn’t feel great, to be deadly honest. It wasn’t a good match from my side. I found a way to win, which sometimes is enough. I’m excited to be in the second round,” Sakkari said after the match. The Greek had only 25 winners to the Slovenian’s 45 but also had only 21 unforced errors to the latter’s 31.

In the second round, the third-seeded Sakkari will play either Maddison Inglis or Shelby Rogers.

Elena Rybakina also eked out a three-set win in her first-round match against Storm Sanders. The seventh seed from Kazakhstan won 6-4, 1-6, 6-1 in an hour and 59 minutes. Rybakina hit 44 winners against the Australian. After her win, Rybakina said, “I’m so happy that I managed to win this match. It was not easy at all and it felt [like] I didn’t play singles for a while. I’m just hoping I’m going to play better and better.”

For a place in the quarter-finals, Rybakina will play a qualifier in either Greek, Despina Papamichail or Czech, Marie Bouzkova.

Adelaide International 1: Ajla Tomljanovic, Priscilla Hon lead Aussie charge

Ajla Tomljanovic defeated Heather Watson 6-4, 7-6(5) in their first-round clash in an hour and 55 minutes. The Australian converted three of the five break points she had on the Briton’s serve while saving two of the four break points she faced. For a place in the round-of-16, Tomljanovic will take on either Italian, Lucia Bronzetti or sixth seed, Sofia Kenin.

Leylah Fernandez ousted Ekaterina Alexandrova 6-3, 6-4 in their first-round match-up. The Canadian needed an hour and 17 minutes to complete the win. In the second round, Fernandez will play either Daria Saville or fifth seed, Iga Swiatek.

Kaja Juvan wrapped up a 6-4, 6-2 win over Chloe Paquet in the first round. The Slovenian will play second seed Aryna Sabalenka next, seeking a chance to reach the quarter-finals.

The opening day’s play at the Adelaide International 1 was closed out with the shocking exit of Petra Kvitova at the hands of Australian, Priscilla Hon. Hon dropped the opening set in the tie-break to the Czech but rebounded triumphantly across the latter two sets to finish with a 6-7(4), 7-5, 6-2 in two hours and 20 minutes. In the second round, Hon will take on either fourth seed Paula Badosa or Victoria Azarenka.

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