Top seed Pliskova starts with impressive win against Linette, Madison Keys also throug
Karolina Pliskova v Magda Linette 6-2 6-1

Top seed Pliskova starts with impressive win against Linette, Madison Keys also throug

30/08/2017

World number one Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic began her US Open bid with a 6-2 6-1 win over Poland's Magda Linette on Arthur Ashe.

Despite the roof on Arthur Ashe Court being closed midway through the match due to the threat of rain in New York, Pliskova wasted little time in closing out world number 72 Linette with an expert display of power hitting and serving.

"I was a bit nervous walking on this court, but I felt pretty solid today," said 10th seed Pliskova, who lost the 2016 final to world number six Angelique Kerber.

Pliskova remains without a Grand Slam title despite rising to world number one, but she will be pleased with her afternoon's work as she progressed in one hour and 18 minutes.

The Czech - who will next face Paraguay's Veronica Cepede Royg or American qualifier Nicole Gibbs - outclassed her opponent after the roof on Arthur Ashe was closed just before the second set.

Pliskova broke twice in the opening set to take a commanding lead with a fine backhand passing shot as Linette struggled on serve.

After fighting off six break points in the fifth game of the second set, Pliskova rolled on to prevail on her first match point with a second-serve ace.

American Madison Keys kicked off her US Open campaign with a 6-3 7-6 (8-6) victory over world number 39 Elise Mertens.

With coaches Lindsay Davenport and Kim Clijsters – both former champions here in New York – watching on under the lights, it was the former who witnessed her apprentice put in a powerful display on Arthur Ashe Stadium.

After trading early breaks, Keys broke Mertens in the eighth game to steal ahead in the opening set, and the 22-year-old clinched it in the following game after 36 minutes on court.

Break-point opportunities came and went in the second set for both players as it remained on serve until the 11th game, when Keys turned on the style to wear down Mertens.

However, serving for the match, Keys fell 15-40 down after a double fault and unforced error, and Mertens then took it to a tie-break with an expert lob.

A topsy-turvy tie-break then saw Mertens squander a set point on her own serve, with Keys going on to win it 8-6 and seal the victory.

The 15th seed will face either Tatjana Maria or Ashley Kratzer in the second round, with the duo unable to complete their match on Tuesday due to heavy rain.

23rd seed Barbora Strycova wasted little time in completing a 6-1 6-3 victory over Misaki Doi of Japan, but 28th seed Lesia Tsurenko of Ukraine s out after being drubbed by Belgium's Yanina Wickmayer.

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