Petra Kvitova made it through to the second round of the US Open but not without a minor scare from Slovenia’s Polona Hercog. Kvitova hit 21 winners on her way to a 7-6(6) 6-1 victory and will face Alize Cornet who defeated Nicole Gibbs.
After breaking in the fifth game of the set it looked like Kvitova would run away with the set and match but she handed the break straight back. Kvitova missed three break points for a *4-3 lead and so had to settle for a tiebreak as the pair exchanged holds. Hercog won the seventh point of the tiebreak to earn the minibreak but gifted it right back to the Czech with a pair of sloppy points. Kvitova failed to take her first two set points at 6-4 but took the third with a well worked serve-forehand combo. Hercog began to fade in the second set and Kvitova took advantage, taking the last five games of the match.
Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova sealed her place in round two after a hard fought 6-4 7-6 (1) victory over Daniela Hantuchova. Pavlyuchenkova started quickly and rushed into a *3-0 lead but dropped one of her breaks back straight away. Hantuchova was struggling on serve and it took until her fifth service game to not go down 15-30 or worse as she forced her opponent to serve for the set. Five break points and four set points went to waste between the two before Pavlyuchenkova was fifth time lucky to take the first set 6-4.
It looked like the Russian would run away with it when she broke in the first game of the second set but a slack service game finished off by a Hantuchova forehand drive tied the scores up in the set. The Slovakian finally made the breakthrough in game eight of the set after some powerful hitting forced the backhand error into the net. She failed to take advantage and an awful service game saw her broken back to 15. There were no more breaks after this and so the second set would head to a tiebreak. An early forehand error saw Pavlyuchenkova grab the early minibreak but Hantuchova’s vicious return down the line pulled it back to *1-2. In the end the tiebreak was fairly one-sided as Pavlyuchenkova won the last five points, a wild forehand finally putting Hantuchova out of her misery.
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