Wimbledon: Aryna Sabalenka opens up 2021 Championships with a win

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Wimbledon: Aryna Sabalenka opens up 2021 Championships with a win

Aryna Sabalenka was the first woman to reach the second round at the 2021 Wimbledon. The second seed won 6-1, 6-4 in an hour and 15 minutes against Monica Niculescu under the roof on Court No. 1. With rain affecting play on the outside courts forcing multiple delays to the start of the day’s schedule, the Championships finally began after a hiatus of 715 days on Court No.

1 with the Belarusian opening play. Sabalenka raced off the blocks blistering winners off both her wings even as Niculescu struggled on the other end with her shot-making and its timing. The Romanian did save two set points while trying to stay in the set in the sixth game but her efforts couldn’t thwart Sabalenka from capturing the set on her serve in the following game.

Wimbledon: Aryna Sabalenka's near-ruthless win

The world no. 4 began the second set in the same commanding manner and built a 3-0 lead following yet another early break. However, she was pegged back as Niculescu broke back.

The momentum shifted just as quickly as Sabalenka recovered her rhythm to go up a break yet again for 4-1. But once again, she lost her serve while trying to consolidate the break. Niculescu finally held her own in the set as she won her first service game to narrow the deficit to 4-3 – albeit with a break.

The last three games of the set went the server’s way, with Sabalenka serving out the match to 15. Sabalenka finished with 47 winners, almost six times as many as Niculescu’s eight. She also had six times as many unforced errors as the Romanian – 30 to the latter’s five.

In total, for the match, she finished with 69 points to her opponent’s 45. In the second round of Wimbledon, Aryna Sabalenka will play either American qualifier Danielle Lao or British wildcard, Katie Boulter. Photo Credit: Wimbledon Twitter

Wimbledon Aryna Sabalenka Monica Niculescu