Some might call her a "newb," but self-professed rookie gamer Sorana Cirstea was the breakout star of the first day of round-robin play at the Mutua Madrid Open Virtual Pro.
A pair of contrasting victories that helped the Romanian sit atop Group 2 by the end of the first day of play with two victories in the charity video gaming tournament.
Learn more: Mutua Madrid Open Virtual Pro competition to begin Monday
Cirstea first beat Johanna Konta in dominant fashion - with the loss of just one point in the 3-0 group stage match - and then saved three match points to beat Elina Svitolina, 4-2.
"I didn't even realize that there were three match points. I only remember one," Cirstea said. "I said, 'Sorana, if you don't win this point, you're going to be out!'
"It was an unbelievable comeback. I didn't even believe it. I'm very happy, because I know Elina is very good at this, and for me, the fact that I picked up a PlayStation one week ago, this means a lot."
The Romanian had everything working from her virtual tennis bag in the game, but also fired off some one-liners, from joking about her real-life losing head-to-head against British No.1 Konta to translating her career success at the real-life Madrid tournament to the video game.
"This is a nice surprise... I've played twice in the quarterfinals in the real Mutua Madrid Open," she joked, "so now I can say I'm doing it a third time. I'll try to go for the semifinals, at least in the virtual world!"
Konta bounced back later in the day on Monday with a 4-2 victory over Victoria Azarenka, and Andreescu ended the day with a 4-3(2) tiebreak victory over Madison Keys.
Okkk I need to practice... @Bandreescu_ kicked my 🍑 pic.twitter.com/hU42m7dmMS— Madison Keys (@Madison_Keys) April 27, 2020
Also going undefeated in two matches was Caroline Wozniacki by beating Kristina Mladenovic, 4-2, and Bianca Andreescu, 3-0, to sit atop Group 3 at the end of the day.
Read more: Bencic, Ferro begin Madrid Virtual Pro with wins
The Dane, who retired from the WTA after the Australian Open in January, nonetheless looked sharp in the virtual Manolo Santana Stadium, where she was a finalist in 2009.
Her secret to success? No tennis, at all.
"I haven't done anything since January," the former World No.1 said. "I haven't seen my racquets, I haven't played any tennis... so I'm fresh, that's for sure. I have a lot of energy to go play!"
Competed at my first virtual @mutuamadridopen today... 🤖🎾 Great fun but I definitely need a little more practice 😂🙈 #MMOpen #PlayAtHome pic.twitter.com/ipNY6zOdn8— Angelique Kerber (@AngeliqueKerber) April 27, 2020
Reigning Madrid champion Kiki Bertens was dominant in a 3-0 win over Angelique Kerber in Group 4, and although Donna Vekic was technically the victor over Eugenie Bouchard when the latter's console glitched out in the second game of their match, it remains to be seen if the Canadian will get a second chance when group play continues on Tuesday.