Match reports

Wozniacki and Sharapova march on

This content was published 6 years ago. It may refer to a past edition of the Internazionali d’Italia.

World No. 2 Caroline Wozniacki recorded her first victory at the Foro Italico since 2011 with a 6-1 6-4 triumph over Alison van Uytvanck.

The Danish player needed one hour 36 minutes to dispatch of the qualifier, who made for a tougher opponent than the scoreline suggests, particularly in the opening set.

Both players had break point opportunities – and hit the same number of winners – in the first set but it was the Australian Open champion who utilised all her experience and took her chances to secure the opener.

It was a similar scenario in the second set as although Van Uytvanck seemed more comfortable, she still couldn’t produce her best tennis when it really mattered, Wozniacki prevailing in the key moments to secure the win.

“I think I served pretty well. I think I returned pretty well. I think I played pretty well,” said Wozniacki, who could claim the No. 1 ranking this week. “So, all of all — all in all, a pretty good match. I tried to move the ball around and mix the pace up a little bit.”

Wozniacki will now face No. 15 seed Anastasija Sevastova in the third round.

Sharapova had a much tougher time in reaching the third round for the first time since 2015, bouncing back from a set down to defeat Dominika Cibulkova on Court Centrale.

It was a seventh meeting for the two players, who played each other at the Foro Italico ten years ago. Sharapova had to come through a tough three setter on that occasion and it was a similar affair on Wednesday as she needed two hours 30 minutes to record victory.

The Russian recovered well from the loss of a first set in which, by her own admittance, she didn’t showcase her best tennis to produce a solid performance and set up a meeting with either No. 3 seed Garbine Muguruza or Daria Gavrilova on Thursday.

“I’d like to just forget that first set. I was just slow and not with it, really, not seeing the ball well, not adjusting, not making any little adjustment steps. And, yeah, a lot of errors,” said Sharapova. “And I was like, Well, that’s got to change. And I’ve just got to be a little bit more aggressive.

“As you said, I played defense quite a while. And I thought my level was extremely well throughout the match. She kept that up for two and a half hours. I was really happy with the way that I finished.”


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