BOGOTÁ, Colombia -- Dalila Jakupovic of Slovenia came through a rain-addled Tuesday at the Claro Open Colsanitas with a 74-minute upset win over No.6 seed Alison Riske of the United States, 6-2, 6-2, advancing to the second round in Bogotá.
The Slovenian led 6-2, 3-2 before a nearly six-hour weather delay caused havoc all over the grounds. Upon resumption, Jakupovic ran off three straight games to complete her victory. Jakupovic won an excellent 75 percent of points on her first serve, and converted all four of the break points she held in the match. Riske was unable to break Jakupovic at any time during the encounter.
"It was very hard with the conditions because it’s altitude, and the rain, it was difficult with this waiting," Jakupovic said, after the match. "We waited more than five hours, I think. I’m happy I won, but it was difficult."
The match began inauspiciously for Riske, as she was broken in the first game despite holding a 40-0 lead. Jakupovic then held on for 2-0, fending off a break point in the process, and the upset bid had started with aplomb.
The typically solid serve of the American was handled by Jakupovic from the very beginning, as the Slovenian took half of the points on Riske's first serve in the opening set. After breaking once more to lead 5-2, Jakupovic struggled to close out the set, squandering two set points and letting Riske reach break point. But Jakupovic prevailed on her third set point to open up a one-set lead.
In the second set, Jakupovic broke Riske to lead 3-2 before storms entered the area, causing all play to be interrupted. But even after the match had resumed, the Slovenian retained all of the momentum. An easy hold for 4-2 led to another quick break of the Riske serve, handing Jakupovic a chance to serve for the match when a forehand by the American sailed wide.
Jakupovic started the following game with a forehand passing shot for a winner, and raced to victory from there, converting her first match point when Riske failed to return a strong serve back into play. Jakupovic will now face either Nao Hibino of Japan or Bulgarian qualifier Elitsa Kostova in the second round.
One other match was completed on Tuesday, as 2nd-seeded Magda Linette of Poland reached the second round with a 6-3, 7-5 win over Evgeniya Rodina of Russia. Linette also needed to wait out the lengthy delay, but held on for victory after 90 minutes of play.
"First matches are never easy," Linette said, after the match. "For sure in conditions like this, when it’s high altitude, there’s some extra stress. The balls are flying, it’s definitely very difficult. I’m just glad. I didn’t play well, I didn’t play perfect as I wished, but I won through to the next round, and that’s most important.
The Polish player led by a set and a break when the rains came, moving back into the locker room up 6-3, 3-2. After the delay, though, Rodina came out of the gates strongly, breaking to level the match at 3-3. Unfortunately for the Russian, she could only hold serve twice out of ten service games in the encounter, limiting the possibility that she could ever claim a lead, despite breaking Linette six times herself.
This proved costly at 5-5, when Rodina double faulted two times in a row to cede another break to Linette. The Pole was able to quell her nerves when serving for the match, and reached her first match point with a stunning backhand winner down the line.
The No.2 seed needed just the one match point to ease to victory, after the Russian punched one of her 40 unforced errors into the net. Linette also had 40 unforced errors during the match, but came through the tight two-setter with 22 winners, compared to only seven by Rodina.