Aryna Sabalenka cruises, Alize Cornet retires at French Open

League: Tennis

Posted on: 29 May, 2024 at 01:10 AM

Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Second-seeded Aryna Sabalenka coasted to a 6-1, 6-2 win over Erika Andreeva in their first-round match at the French Open on Tuesday in Paris.

Sabalenka, of Belarus, recorded 27 winners against 16 unforced errors and broke the Russian's serve five times to capture the match in 68 minutes.

"In these conditions I just prepare myself for long rallies and I'm not trying to hit bigger, because if you hit bigger it brings more unforced errors, which is not really something I'm looking to," Sabalenka said post-match. "I'm just preparing myself mentally that it's going to be longer points and it's going to take more shots to finish the point."

Also on Tuesday, fourth-seeded Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan cruised to a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Greet Minnen of Belgium.

Rybakina overcame an early 2-0 deficit to win 10 straight games to set up a second-round clash against Arantxa Rus of the Netherlands. Rus posted a 6-4, 6-3 win over three-time major champion Angelique Kerber of Germany.

Seventh-seeded Zheng Qinwen of China also breezed to a 6-2, 6-1 win over Frenchwoman Alize Cornet, who retired after the match. Cornet, 34, previously announced that the French Open would be her final tournament on the tour.

"I'd like to be remembered as a genuine player who shared all her emotions with everyone all throughout her career with a fighting spirit," said Cornet, who won six singles titles. "Someone who is a passionate tennis player, who likes to fight and who could die for it.

"I think I showed it several times, that it was actually my type of character. People may love me or not for that type of personality, actually, but this is what brought me until here."

Tenth-seeded Daria Kasatkina of Russia notched a 7-5, 6-1 victory over Magdalena Frech of Poland.

No. 14 seed Madison Keys was a 6-3, 6-2 winner over Mexico's Renata Zarazua, and No. 19 Victoria Azarenka of Belarus needed an hour flat to eliminate Argentina's Nadia Podoroska 6-1, 6-0.

No. 22 Emma Navarro similarly took care of Turkey's Zeynep Sonmez 6-2, 6-0 in 50 minutes, while No. 25 Elise Mertens of Belgium posted a 6-3, 7-6 (8) win over Maria Lourdes Carle of Argentina.

In a pair of upsets, Spain's Paula Badosa rallied past British No. 26 seed Katie Boulter 4-6, 7-5, 6-4, and Russia's Anna Blinkova outlasted No. 28 Sorana Cirstea of Romania 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (5).

Kazakhstan's Yulia Putintseva had little trouble defeating Sloane Stephens 6-1, 6-2, and Russian 17-year-old Mirra Andreeva posted a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Emina Bektas in her second start at Roland Garros.

Peyton Stearns fared better than fellow Americans Stephens and Bektas. She fought past Croatian qualifier Lucija Ciric Bagaric 6-3, 6-7 (8), 7-6 (6), needing to reach 10 points in the third-set tiebreaker as per Grand Slam rules.

Other winners Tuesday included Italy's Sara Errani, Egypt's Mayar Sherif, Japan's Moyuka Uchijima, Russia's Elina Avanesyan, Germany's Tamara Korpatsch and Croatia's Petra Martic. Uchijima will face Sabalenka in the second round.

--Field Level Media