On a day where 11 Americans were scheduled to play at their home Grand Slam, former major finalists Danielle Collins and Jennifer Brady of the United States eased into the US Open second round. However, their compatriot, former US Open champion Sloane Stephens, was defeated by Beatriz Haddad Maia in a first-round thriller.
Collins, the 2022 Australian Open runner-up and former World No.7, zipped past Linda Fruhvirtova of the Czech Republic 6-2, 6-0 in just 52 minutes on the Grandstand.
Collins, who is barely outside the seedings at World No.34, never faced a break point during her routine victory over 18-year-old Fruhvirtova, ranked No.56. Collins had lost to Fruhvirtova in their sole prior meeting at Dubai earlier this year.
Brady, the 2021 Australian Open finalist, made a successful return to Grand Slam play with a 6-3, 7-6(4) win over lucky loser Kimberly Birrell of Australia.
Former World No.13 Brady is playing in her first major in over two years, since 2021 Roland Garros. Brady missed two years of action on tour due to injuries, but returned this July and has already notched wins over Top 30 players Jelena Ostapenko and Anhelina Kalinina this summer.
On Monday, Brady, a US Open semifinalist in 2020, came back from 5-3 down in the second set to oust Birrell, who lost in the final round of qualifying last week before getting a lucky loser spot.
On Louis Armstrong Stadium, No.19 seed Haddad Maia edged out Stephens 6-2, 5-7, 6-4 in their opening-round barnburner. Haddad Maia improved to 2-0 over Stephens by eking out the victory in a hair under three hours.
Former World No.3 Stephens, also just outside the seedings at World No.36, captured the 2017 US Open title and is making her 12th appearance in the US Open main draw. Among the 21 Americans in the main draw, only Venus Williams has made more appearances at the tournament (24).
But Haddad Maia continued to excel in three-set matches as she wrapped up the win. Since the start of 2022, Haddad Maia has won a tour-leading 28 matches decided in three sets.
Haddad Maia will face two Americans in a row when she takes on Taylor Townsend in the second round. Townsend, the last player to receive direct entry into the main draw, defeated France's Varvara Gracheva 6-4, 6-2.
Townsend, now a Top 5 player in doubles, has previously demonstrated singles success in New York City. Her career-best Grand Slam singles performance came at the 2019 US Open, where she made the Round of 16 and pushed eventual champion Bianca Andreescu to three sets.
Bernarda Pera is another American who grabbed a big win on Monday. Pera upset No.16 seed Veronika Kudermetova 7-5, 6-4, reaching the second round of the US Open for the first time since 2020.