Elina Svitolina lost the first match of her comeback to the WTA tour on Monday at the Charleston Open. Kazakhstan’s Yulia Putintseva ousted the Ukrainian who’d received a main draw wildcard, 6-7(3), 6-2, 6-4 after two hours and 46 minutes of play.
The WTA 500 tournament’s the first tournament Svitolina’s playing in over a year since she announced a hiatus in 2022 after a second-round exit at the Miami Open, first due to an injury and then, later, due to her pregnancy.
Putintseva won 58% of her second-serve points and 62% points on return on Svitolina’s second serve. Svitolina faced 24 break points of which she saved merely seven. Putintseva saved seven of the 11 break points she faced.
In the second round, Putintseva will play the Ekaterina Alexandrova. Seeded seventh, Alexandrova received a first-round bye.
Charleston Open: Seeds tumble out
Meanwhile, among the four seeds who played their first-round matches on Monday, only one advanced to the second round.
Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu, seeded 15th, defeated Hungary’s Dalma Galfi 6-1, 7-5 in an hour and 38 minutes to reach the next round. Begu awaits either Aliaksandra Sasnovich or Sofia Kenin. Their match had to be postponed to Tuesday after rain washed out play.
Kenin was leading 3-0 at the time of the match’s suspension. Julia Grabher ousted 10th seed Shuai Zhang in their first-round match. The Austrian won 6-4, 1-6, 6-3 in an hour and 35 minutes. Earlier, in the first match of the 2023 edition of the tournament, Linda Fruhvirtova upset 14th seed Jil Teichmann.
The Czech won 6-2, 3-6, 6-2 after two hours and eight minutes of play. Lastly, Anna Kalinskaya upset 11th seed Anhelina Kalinina in their opening-round clash at the Charleston Open. Kalinskaya’s 7-6(6), 6-4 win came a minute shy of two hours.
Kalinskaya will play Alize Cornet. The Frenchwoman took out American wildcard Fiona Crawley, 6-0, 6-2.
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