TORONTO, Canada - Playing in her first match since Wimbledon, No.5 seed Elina Svitolina made a strong start to her Rogers Cup campaign, recovering from 0-4 down in the second set to battle past Daria Kasatkina 7-6(4), 6-4.
Svitolina’s opponent was battle tested, coming off a roller coaster opening match against Roberta Vinci which saw Kasatkina recover from 2-5 down in the second to win in two tiebreak sets.
But her first-round heroics cost her against the rested Svitolina, falling in straight sets after just under two hours.
Their second-round clash was a grind from the start, with Kasatkina holding first after weathering four straight breaks of serve. After Svitolina replied in kind, the first set became a tug of war, with the pair splitting another four breaks before the Ukrainian finally broke through in the tiebreaker.
But the momentum looked to be firmly with the Russian player in the second set, with Kasatkina consolidating an early double break for a 4-0 lead.
Undaunted, Svitolina switched gears, serving more aggressively and attacking the increasingly sluggish Kasatkina’s weaker backhand wing, reeling off six games in a row. Svitolina sealed her 40th victory of 2017 after a grueling hour and 50 minutes.
With the victory Svitolina earns the right to face the winner between No.9 seed Venus Williams and Katerina Siniakova in the third round.