Sharapova defeats Babos, advances to third round of US Open
In a thrilling three setter Maria Sharapova defeated Timea Babos 6-7, 6-4, 6-1 to advance to the third round of US Open. Earlier she had defeated second-seeded Halep in her first Grand Slam match after a 15-month hiatus enforced on her post doping charges. Sharapova is so far enjoying a good run and she might just shock the tennis world by winning the tournament.
The US Open, a modern version of one of the oldest tennis championships in the world, is the fourth and final Grand Slam of the year. Held annually, this tournament is played on hard courts with the main tournament consisting of five event championships. Interestingly, unlike the other Slams, it is the only Grand Slam that employs tiebreakers in every set of a match.
US Open is the only grand slam which has been played on all three surfaces: grass (1881-1974), clay (1975-1977), and hard court (1978-to date). Jimmy Connors is the only player to have the distinction of winning the US Open on all the three surfaces. Further, Chris Evert is the only woman to win this grand slam on two surfaces, clay and hard court.
Rafael Nadal and Karolina Pliskova are the top seeded players in the men's and women's singles respectively. However, Nadal will face tough competition from Roger Federer, who is back to his prime, while Grigor Dimitrov and Dominic Thiem are the dark horses. In women's singles, Venus Williams and Garbine Muguruza could mount a challenge for Pliskova.
There were no major upsets in the first round, except for 19-year-old Naomi Osaka pulling off a surprise win over Angelique Kerber. Federer avoided a scare in his first round match against Frances Tiafoe as he won in five sets, while Nadal cruised through to the second round. Fourth-seeded Alexander Zverev, though, crashed out in the second round after losing to Borna Coric.