Jessica Pegula makes quick work of Camila Giorgi at U.S. Open

League: Tennis

Posted on: 30 Aug, 2023 at 03:35 AM

Credit: Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports

Third-seeded American Jessica Pegula needed just 82 minutes to knock off Italy's Camila Giorgi on Tuesday in the first round of the U.S. Open at New York.

Pegula recorded eight aces during the 6-2, 6-2 victory at Arthur Ashe Stadium. She had 28 winners against 13 unforced errors.

"I think I just did everything really solid," Pegula said. "I don't think I did anything spectacular, but everything was pretty even."

Giorgi had just 16 winners and committed 31 unforced errors.

"Camila is always very tough," Pegula said. "You never know what you're going to get. She's a great ball striker, good athlete, goes for her shots.

"I've played her several times this year already, a lot of times throughout my career. I knew what I needed to do, but sometimes it depends as well on how you're playing and how she's playing."

While Pegula, 29, attempts to reach a Grand Slam semifinal for the first time, seven-time major champion Venus Williams made an early exit from the tournament.

Belgian qualifier Greet Minnen crushed Williams 6-1, 6-1, the worst defeat ever for Williams at Flushing Meadows.

"I really have to give credit to (Minnen)," Williams said. "It was just incredible, honestly. I mean, if she can play like that, you imagine that she can be in the top 10, or perhaps No. 1, or maybe win a Grand Slam, something like that, if she can play at this level."

Minnen, 26, is ranked 97th in the world. She said of Williams, "For me, it was incredible to play a legend like her. I have huge respect. To be there at 43 years old, it's amazing really."

In other Tuesday action, No. 7 seed Caroline Garcia of France was an upset victim.

Chinese qualifier Wang Yafan committed just 11 unforced errors while posting a 6-4, 6-1 victory over Garcia in 70 minutes. Garcia, who was a semifinalist last year, committed 34 unforced errors.

It was the second top-10 win of Wang's career. The other was a victory over Ukraine's Elina Svitolina at Miami in 2019.

Svitolina, seeded 26th at the U.S. Open, won her first-round match, 6-3, 6-1, over Germany's Anna-Lena Friedsam.

No. 2 Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus cruised past Belgium's Maryna Zanevska 6-3, 6-2.

Fifth-seeded Ons Jabeur of Tunisia avoided an upset, as she prevailed 7-5, 7-6 (4) over Camila Osorio of Colombia.

Jabeur saved 12 of 18 break points during a highly competitive match.

"I was more playing on her backhand," Jabeur said. "That helped me get more balls in. To be honest with you I thought, 'Just keep the ball in and see what happens.' Changing up the rhythm kind of helped me."

Wimbledon champion Marketa Vondrousova, the No. 9 seed from the Czech Republic, won her eighth consecutive Grand Slam match with an easy 6-3, 6-0 victory over South Korean qualifier Han Na-Lae.

Denmark's Clara Tauson knocked off No. 27 seed Anastasia Potapova of Russia 7-6 (4), 3-6, 6-3.

Russia's Daria Kasatkina, seeded 13th, rallied for a 2-6, 6-4, 6-2 win over the United States' Alycia Parks, while No. 14 seed Liudmila Samsonova of Russia beat American Claire Liu 7-6 (3), 6-3.

Madison Keys of the U.S., seeded 17th, posted a 6-2, 6-4 victory over Arantxa Rus of the Netherlands. No. 22 seed Ekaterina Alexandrova of Russia outlasted Canada's Leylah Fernandez 7-6 (4), 5-7, 6-4. Fernandez was a U.S. Open finalist in 2021.

No. 25 seed Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic ousted Romania's Elena-Gabriela Ruse 6-1, 6-4. Another Czech, 31st-seeded Marie Bouzkova, was a 7-5, 6-4 winner over Ashlyn Krueger of the United States.

American Peyton Stearns beat Bulgaria's Viktoriya Tomova 6-3, 6-4, and the United States' Sachia Vickery upset No. 21 Donna Vekic of Croatia 2-6, 7-5, 6-2.

Also winning on Tuesday were Great Britain's Katie Boulter, Germany's Tamara Korpatsch, Czech Linda Noskova, Italy's Martina Trevisan, Croatia's Petra Martic, Belgium's Yanina Wickmayer, France's Clara Burel, Ukraine's Lesia Tsurenko and Romania's Patricia Maria Tig.

No. 12 Barbora Krejcikova of the Czech Republic, No. 23 Qinwen Zheng of China, Eva Lys of Germany, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia, Kaia Kanepi of Estonia, Jodie Burrage of Great Britain and Sofia Kenin of the United States also won posted victories.

--Field Level Media