Naomi Osaka finishes strong, wins first-round match at French Open

League: Tennis

Posted on: 26 May, 2024 at 10:15 PM

Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Former World No. 1 Naomi Osaka recorded a 6-1, 4-6, 7-5 win over unseeded Italian Lucia Bronzetti on Sunday in the first round of the French Open in Paris.

Returning from a 15-month maternity break earlier this year, Osaka split the first two sets before winning the initial four games of the third. The Japanese star rebounded after dropping the next five games to win the next three to dispatch Bronzetti.

Osaka, a four-time Grand Slam champion, admittedly was unaware of her potential second-round foe. For the record, the 26-year-old will face the winner of the Monday match pitting No. 1 seed Iga Swiatek of Poland or French qualifier Leolia Jeanjean.

"After, I was, like, why does everyone keep asking me about this draw?" Osaka said after besting Bronzetti. "Then I knew that I was in the top half so, jokingly, I was, like, ‘Well, it's not like I'm playing Iga.' Then everyone got quiet. So I was like, ‘Oh.'"

Also on Sunday, ninth-seeded Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia, who won the title at Roland Garros in 2017 as an unseeded player, posted a 6-4, 7-5 win over Jaqueline Cristian of Romania.

No. 18 Marta Kostyuk of Ukraine outlasted Laura Pigossi of Brazil 7-6, 6-7 (4), 6-4. No. 21 Caroline Garcia of France also went three sets to defeat Eva Lys of Germany 4-6, 7-5, 6-2.

Czech No. 24 seed Barbora Krejcikova and Russian No. 29 Veronika Kudermetova weren't as fortunate. Unseeded Viktorija Golubic of Switzerland downed Krejcikova 7-6 (3), 6-4 while Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic notched a 6-2, 6-4 win over Kudermetova.

No. 30 Dayana Yastremska of Ukraine rebounded from a first-set misstep to record a 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 win over Ajla Tomljanovic of Australia.

No. 32 Katerina Siniakova of the Czech Republic won a tight match with Dalma Galfi of Hungary 7-5, 7-6 (3).

Major champion Sofia Kenin of the United States, the 2020 Australian Open winner and a French Open finalist the same year, overcame a first-set loss to get past Laura Siegemund of Germany 4-6, 6-2, 6-2. Ranked No. 56 in the world, Kenin's comeback against Siegemund was slowed by a lengthy rain delay after she was up 5-2 in the second set, but she responded to close out that set and go up 4-0 in the third set en route to the victory.

Other winners Sunday included Americans Katie Volynets and Amanda Anisimova; China's Xiyu Wang, Xinyu Wang and Yafan Wang; Croatia's Jana Fett and Donna Vekic; Serbia's Olga Danilovic; Slovenia's Tamara Zidansek; Denmark's Clara Tauson; and France's Chloe Paquet.

--Field Level Media