Errani Outgrinds Petkovic In Opener

She's got a lot to defend over the next few weeks, but she's already looking pretty good - Sara Errani beat Andrea Petkovic at the Mutua Madrid Open on Saturday.

Published May 03, 2014 12:15


Embedded code:

MADRID, Spain - Sara Errani made a winning start to her Mutua Madrid Open campaign on Saturday, cooling off the red-hot Andrea Petkovic as first round action began at the Premier Mandatory event.

Where can you watch live action from Madrid? Check out WTA TV developed by Xerox!

The No.10-seeded Errani was a game away from losing the first set trailing 5-4, but she flicked the switch at just the right moment, winning five games in a row - and eventually nine of the next 10 - to close her fellow former Top 10 player out in straight sets in an hour and 34 minutes, 7-5, 6-1.

"The first round is never easy and the draw is especially strong here," Errani said. "Andrea is always a very tough opponent and very competitive - and we played very close in the first set, obviously.

"I didn't play my best, but it's okay. The goal was to win and keep going in the tournament."

Errani has quite a bit to defend over the next few weeks - she was a semifinalist at three big events in a row last year, first here in Madrid, then Rome, then Roland Garros - but she's already buffered those with a semifinal finish in Stuttgart two weeks ago, and this is her very favorite surface, after all.

"It's nice to be on clay again," the Italian No.1 said. "Of course it's a lot of points to defend, and a lot of pressure, so it's not going to be easy, but I'm happy to be back on clay and I'm happy to be here.

"I love Madrid. And I love Spain, it's my second home, and I have a lot of friends here."

In the second night match, Spanish wildcard Lara Arruabarrena took out Tsvetana Pironkova, 6-3, 6-4.

There were five other winners on Day 1 of main draw play, most notably home favorite Garbiñe Muguruza. While Spanish No.1 Carla Suárez Navarro was winning the first WTA title of her career over in Oeiras, Muguruza - Spain's No.2 player - rallied from a set and 3-0 down and battled almost three hours to beat Sílvia Soler-Espinosa in an all-Spanish clash (read more about that match here).

Other matches saw Alison Riske let two set points go in the first set but beat Kaia Kanepi, 6-7(7), 6-1, 6-2, Bojana Jovanovski rout Karin Knapp, 6-1, 6-1, Magdalena Rybarikova close out Annika Beck, 6-2, 7-5, and Christina McHale beat Lauren Davis, 7-6(2), 6-3 (read more about that match here).

The qualifying draw also wrapped up, with Caroline Garcia, Karolina Pliskova, Monica Niculescu, Petra Cetkovska, Julia Goerges, Belinda Bencic, Kristina Mladenovic and Mariana Duque-Mariño advancing.

Bencic, who beat Camila Giorgi in her final round of qualifying match, is slotted to play No.1 seed Serena Williams in the first round on Sunday. The 17-year-old Swiss, who was recently profiled on CNN Open Court, filmed a video from the Mutua Madrid Open too - watch it at the top of this article.

Share this page!

Related news

  • Stephens, Cornet Survive Madrid Openers

    April 30, 2016
    Opening and closing the first night session of the Mutua Madrid Open's main draw, Alizé Cornet and Sloane Stephens each edged past spirited opposition to advance.
  • Bacsinszky Blasts Off To Rabat Title

    April 30, 2016
    Top seed Timea Bacsinszky kicked off her clay season with her first title of 2016, cruising past a resurgent Marina Erakovic in straight sets
  • Safarova Storms Past Stosur In Prague

    April 30, 2016
    2015 French Open finalist Lucie Safarova won her first clay court title in over a decade, recovering from a set down to defeat Samantha Stosur at the J&T Banka Prague Open.
To The Top