Former Volvo Car Open finalist Jelena Ostapenko powered through her opening round, defeating Johanna Larsson in straight sets 6-1, 6-4. Seeded 10th at the event, the 2017 finalist needed just over an hour to wrap up the match.
Though losing her serve in the opening game of the match, Ostapenko reeled 6 games on the trot, breaking the Swede’s serve thrice en route to 6-1 opening set win. "I think in general I played quite well. I wasn't missing so much and I was trying to hit more winners," Ostapenko said after the match.
"She's a great player. I've played a couple of matches against her and it's never easy to beat her because she fights until the end. I was just trying to play my best and I'm glad I won the match." Speaking about playing at this WTA event, the Latvian added, "I'm really glad that I'm here.
It's a really great atmosphere here, and I'm just trying to show my best," Ostapenko said. "Of course, you have to move differently because [clay] is very slippery. I kind of like clay courts, and when I started practicing after Miami...I was really happy that I could play on clay again, especially on green clay, because it's much faster than red clay”.
Ostapenko next faces crowd favourite Shelby Rogers for a place in the Quarterfinals. Rogers, who is playing her first match in over a year due to the knee surgery, outmuscled Russia's Evgeniya Rodina in straight sets to enter this clash.