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article imageU.S Open Tennis - Day 1

By Daryl Hammond     Aug 27, 2013 in Sports
New York - Defending champion Serena Williams began a staunch defence of her title with a straight sets victory over Francesca Schiavone.
The number one seed allowed he opponent one game in a 6-0 6-1 demolition. Explaining her gung ho approach to the match, Williams said:
"I was just out there trying to be focused," she said. "When you see you have to go up against a former grand slam champion, it's not very easy to see your name in a draw like that. You have to be very serious."
Her sister Venus also made through to the second round with relative ease, beating 12th seed Kirsten Flipkins in straight sets.
Venus has not been at her best of late, after losing in the first round of the French open and withdrawing from Wimbledon. But the American looked back to her best against the Wimbledon finalist.
Sloane Stephens meanwhile was able to make it to the next round but was made to work hard for her victory by Mandy Minella. The Luxembourger took Stephens all the way, with a third set tie-break finally separating the two. Speaking after the match, Stephens said:
“I just told myself I need to be really aggressive,” Stephens said. “The match is going to get away from me if you don’t pull yourself together. I think when I give myself a reality check, most of the time it works.”
Her compatriot Ryan Harrison was not so fortunate, as he was comfortably beaten by number two seed Rafael Nadal. The 2010 champion also won in straight sets, with a score of 6-4 6-2 6-2.
Fellow Spaniard David Ferrer also had a safe passage to the next round, taking less than two hours to be Nick Kyrgios 7-5 6-3 6-2.
The day’s shock result saw Britain’s Dan Evans knock out 11th seed Kei Nishikori in this only his second grand slam, the 23-year-old beat the Japanese no.1 6-4 6-4 6-2. After securing his first ever grand slam win, Evans said.
"I had a lot of confidence that I could beat him, and I think that helped me a lot."
It was a good day for Brits, as Laura Robson, who was seeded for the first time in her career, took a straight sets victory of Spaniard Lourdes Dominguez Lino.
The Grandstand stadium saw two of the day’s longest matches. 27th seed Fernando Verdasco was far from his best as a multitude of unforced errors saw him succumb to Ivan Dodig. His efforts of late comeback proved futile, losing 6-3 7-5 1-6 4-6 6-3.
Another five set behemoth was played out between Bernard Tomic and Albert Ramos. The match, which lasted for nearly four hours, ended 6-3 3-6 4-6 7-6 (7-1) 6-3.
As the evening wore on Flushing Meadows was awash with rain forcing Roger Federer off court before he could his first round match against Grega Zemlja.
The rest of yesterday's results can be found here:
More about US Open, Serena williams, Tennis, Rafael nadal, laura robson
 
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