2021 US Open, women's singles: Sabalenka, Halep reach third round
Women's singles number two seed Aryna Sabalenka reached the third round of the US Open for the first time since 2018. She brushed past her opponent in 59 minutes. Sabalenka ousted 2021 Roland Garros semi-finalist Tamara Zidansek of Slovenia, 6-3, 6-1. Meanwhile, Romania's Simona Halep moved into the third round for the first time in five years. Here's more.
Sabalenka wins her 40th match in 2021
It was a top-notch performance by Sabalenka, who had lost in the second round of the last two US Opens. However, she was mostly untroubled by World No.40 Zidansek as she picked up her 40th match-win of the season. Sabalenka hit 23 winners to just 10 unforced errors and saved both break points she faced. Zidansek fired eight winners but committed 19 unforced errors.
I think it was a really solid match, says Sabalenka
After her win, Sabalenka said it was a solid match and she is happy with the win. "I think it was a really solid match, and I did everything I could in this match," the No.2 seed told the press. "I'm really happy with this win. I think it was a great level for me today," Sabaenka added.
Sabalenka to face Collins in the third round
Sabalenka will take on the in-form 26th-seeded American Danielle Collins. Collins booked her third-round spot by overcoming Kaja Juvan, 6-4, 6-2, in an hour and nine minutes. Sabalenka has a 2-0 head-to-head record against Collins. Sabalenka lauded Collins and said the latter is playing well right now. She highlighted Collins as a powerful player.
Halep makes a strong return
Halep enjoyed a 6-3, 6-1 victory over Kristina Kucova. Halep has struggled at the US Open of late. She lost in the first round in consecutive appearances in 2017 and 2018. She also failed to go past the second round since reaching the quarters in 2016. However, Halep has made a strong return after missing the French Open and Wimbledon with a calf injury.
Krejcikova wins, Osaka advances after Danilovic withdraws
French Open winner Barbora Krejcikova beat Christina McHale of the United States, 6-3, 6-1 in a rain-hit encounter. Krejcikova finished the match with 20 winners. Next up for Krejcikova is Kamilla Rakhimova, who upset her 32nd-seeded compatriot Ekaterina Alexandrova, 6-4, 6-1. Defending champion Naomi Osaka advanced as well after the withdrawal of her second-round opponent, Olga Danilovic, due to a non-COVID related viral illness
Other crucial results in women's singles
Garbine Muguruza, a two-time Grand Slam champion, beat Andrea Petkovic 6-4, 6-2 and will next face No. 18 seed Victoria Azarenka. Azarenka, who reached her third US Open final last year, beat Jasmine Paolini 6-3, 7-6 (1). Ons Jabeur beat Maria Serrano 6-0, 6-1 in 53 minutes. Elina Svitolina defeated Rebeka Masarova 6-2, 7-5, and No. 15 Elise Mertens beat Valentini Grammatikopoulou 6-2, 6-2.