Following a tough opening round match at Roland Garros, defending champion Maria Sharapova will continue her quest to defend her crown with a second round match on Thursday afternoon. The Russian superstar will face fellow countrywoman Vitalia Diatchenko in the second round of the tournament, a player whom she has never faced previously on the professional tour.
In one of the tougher opening round matches in the draw, Sharapova was faced with the task of ousting Kaia Kanepi and it certainly wasn’t a straightforward affair. While Sharapova won the match in straight sets, she faced resistance from her Estonian foe in the second set. Ultimately, she came out of it unscathed with a 6-2, 6-4 scoreline.
“I’m getting over it, and hopefully it will pass by soon,” Sharapova said. “But obviously it was such a big occasion for me to be back out on center court, and I had a tough opponent ahead of me. And the conditions were pretty difficult as well. So I knew it wasn’t just going to depend on the tennis today.
“Overall I’m just happy I got through it and have a day off tomorrow – I should be better by then.”
Sharapova will come up against Vitalia Diatchenko, who rallied from a set down to beat Stefanie Voegele 4-6, 6-3, 6-2.
“I got to know her during Fed Cup this year,” Sharapova said. “That was really the first time we spent together. I didn’t get a chance to practice with her, though. I saw her play doubles a little bit – maybe it was good because it was the first time I had really seen her strike the ball. She’s a big hitter.”
This marks the first time that these two will meet on the professional tour. There is little to say about this match other than that Sharapova should have little trouble working her way past her inexperienced Russian foe.
Prediction: Maria Sharapova in Straight Sets