Gippsland Trophy: Coco Gauff, Jasmine Paolini play out thrilling finishes



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Gippsland Trophy: Coco Gauff, Jasmine Paolini play out thrilling finishes

Destanee Aiava reached the second round of the Gippsland Trophy in Melbourne on Monday. The Australian wildcard defeated France’s Chloe Paquet 6-1, 4-6, 6-4 in their first-round match. Next up for Aiava is or German Laura Siegemund.

Siegemund defeated Romanian Monica Niculescu in their first-round match 7-5, 6-4. Earlier, Niculescu replaced Kazakhstan’s Zarina Diyas who pulled out of the event before her first round against Siegemund with illness.

In the other Aussie-French first-round clash of the day, France’s Alize Cornet got the better of Ajla Tomljanovic. Cornet needed three sets to take the win as well. After dropping the opening set, the Frenchwoman recovered well enough to drop just four games across the second and third sets, eventually prevailing 5-7, 6-1, 6-3.

Cornet’s second-round meeting will be against the second seed Naomi Osaka. Japan’s Mayo Hibi defeated American Varvara Lepchenko in the opening round. The world no. 182 claimed a 6-4, 6-7(3), 6-1 win to advance further in the event.

She will play seventh-seeded Belgian Elise Mertens in the second round. Katie Boulter of Great Britain ousted Anna Kalinskaya of Russia in the first round. Boulter won in straight sets 6-1, 6-3. She will face 14th seed Coco Gauff of the United States in the second round.

Gippsland Trophy: Coco Gauff continues to make waves

Gauff survived Switzerland’s Jil Teichmann in her opener, winning 6-3, 6-7(6), 7-6(5). The teenager looked to be in command of proceedings midway up to the second set before Teichmann stormed back into the match.

The world no. 57 overturned a break to take the second set in the tie-break. In the third set, Gauff once again dominated the start of proceedings building a 4-1 lead before Teichmann broke back to level the set at four-all. With neither player giving in, the set made way to the tie-break where Gauff held firm to take the tie-break and the match.

Jasmine Paolini came back from being a game away from defeat to upset 10th seed Qiang Wang in their second-round match. The Italian was down 2-5 in the second set after having lost the opening set 6-3 before winning five games on the trot to take the set 7-5.

In the third set, she broke Wang in the seventh game before serving out the match in the 10th game. Paolini will play either Cathy McNally or eighth seed Karolina Muchova in the round-of-16. Third seed Elina Svitolina defeated German Andrea Petkovic in the second round of the Gippsland Trophy.

In a match that was riddled with service breaks, the Ukrainian held her nerves long enough to claim a straight-sets 6-1, 6-4 win. She will next play either 13th seed Jelena Ostapenko or Danka Kovinic in the pre-quarter-finals.