Charleston Open: Ashleigh Barty begins clay campaign with a resounding win

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Charleston Open: Ashleigh Barty begins clay campaign with a resounding win

In her first tournament on clay since the 2019 French Open – which she won – world no. 1 Ashleigh Barty made a successful return to the surface. The Australian advanced to the third round of the Charleston Open on Wednesday with a 6-2, 6-1 win over Misaki Doi.

Barty needed just 61 minutes to wrap up the win. Speaking after the match, the top-seed said, “I had to use it as an opportunity to try and build some comfort. I think having a couple days between Miami and playing this first match was important, to have my body rest, but to also try and prepare to change surfaces.

It was a very quick turnaround, but I felt great out there tonight (on Wednesday). I still did hit on clay in the middle of [last] year, to try to keep some consistency in the way the schedule usually would flow”. In the round-of-16, Barty will play Shelby Rogers.

Rogers came through her match against fellow American and 13th seed Amanda Anisimova 1-6, 7-5, 6-4. Anisimova dominated the match and at one point led 6-1, 4-1 but a lower-body injury pegged her back. Rogers, to her credit, didn’t let the occasion distract her and capitalised on her chances to push through to the next round.

Charleston Open: Lauren Davis scores the heftiest upset

Paula Badosa and Cathy McNally will play the third round. The Spaniard upset fifth-seeded Belinda Bencic 6-2, 6-7(2), 6-1 while the American ousted Anastasija Sevastova 7-6(3), 2-6, 6-4.

Ajla Tomljanovic also posted an upset en route to the third round. The Australian defeated 17th seed Marie Bouzkova 4-6, 7-5, 7-5 in the second round. Tomljanovic will next play former champion, Sloane Stephens. Stephens got past eighth seed Madison Keys 6-4, 6-4 in their second-round clash.

Veronika Kudermetova and Kurumi Nara will take each other on in the round-of-16. The 15th seed from Russia ousted Emma Navarro 6-4, 6-4 while Nara defeated Whitney Osuigwe 6-1, 6-4 in the second round. In the second half of the draw, Lauren Davis posted the biggest upset of the tournament by taking out second seed Sofia Kenin 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.

The American will next play another compatriot, the 14th-seeded Coco Gauff. The teenager took down Liudmila Samsonova in the second round 4-6, 6-1, 6-4. Danka Kovinic will play third seed Petra Kvitova for a spot in the quarter-finals.

Kovinic got past Leylah Fernandez 6-4, 3-6, 6-3. The last third-round match at the Charleston Open has been set between Alize Cornet and Ons Jabeur. The Frenchwoman upset seventh seed Elise Mertens 7-5, 6-3 in their second-round match on Wednesday while Jabeur took her place in the third round on Tuesday.