The trouble with being a young rising tennis star is that while you might score some impressive wins, it takes time for your ranking to improve. Until that happens, when you get to big tournaments you’re likely to face tough competition in early rounds. Eugenie Bouchard and Monica Puig came into Roland Garros 2014 off of their first career WTA titles. But Genie has been rising up the ranks longer and more rapidly than Monica. As the 18th seed, Bouchard drew Shahar Peer in the first round. Shahar is a solid player, but Genie did what was expected and took her opponent out decisively, 6-0 6-2. Monica Puig drew former Roland Garros finalist and #17 seed, Samantha Stosur. Ouch. That’s just the luck of the draw. It was over quickly, with Samantha defeating Monica, 6-1 6-1. Puig stayed with Stosur with 16 winners to Samantha’s 18. However, Monica’s 26 unforced errors to only 10 from Stosur told the story of the match.
The top seeds moved on in the women’s draw the first two days, including the defending champion, top seeded Serena Williams, and last year’s runner-up, 7th seeded Maria Sharapova. There are still a handful of top players in #2 Li Na’s half of the draw that still haven’t played their first match, including Li Na herself, #4 Simona Halep, #11 Ana Ivanovic, #10 Sara Errani, #13 Caroline Wozniacki and #15 Sloane Stephens. I am especially curious to see how Wozniacki and Stephens perform. Caroline has seen her personal life splashed all over the media in the past week. Will she be focused against a very tough first round opponent in Yanina Wickmayer? As for Sloane, she just needs to reassert the great play that the tennis world has seen in flashes on big stages. Her m.o. has been that the greater the tournament, the greater her performance, but like Wozniacki she also has a potentially tough first round opponent in Peng Shuai. I can’t wait for Tuesday to arrive!
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1 SERENA WILLIAMS (won 6-2 6-1 vs Alize Lim)
3 AGNIESZKA RADWANSKA (won 6-3 6-0 vs Zhang Shuai)
5 PETRA KVITOVA (won 7-5 6-2 vs Zarina Diyas)
7 MARIA SHARAPOVA (won 6-1 6-2 vs Ksenia Pervak)
8 ANGELIQUE KERBER (won 6-3 6-1 vs Katarzyna Piter)
9 DOMINIKA CIBULKOVA (won 7-5 6-0 vs Virginie Razzano)
16 SABINE LISICKI (won 6-1 7-5 vs Fiona Ferro)
18 EUGENIE BOUCHARD (won 6-0 6-2 vs Shahar Peer)
19 SAMANTHA STOSUR (won 6-1 6-1 vs Monica Puig)
20 ALIZE CORNET (won 6-2 6-1 vs Ashleigh Barty)