US Open 2013: Victoria Azarenka with statement of intent
Second seed wins 6-0 6-0 in opening round
Wednesday 28 August 2013
Second seed Victoria Azarenka produced a statement of intent as she whitewashed Germany's Dinah Pfizenmaier 6-0 6-0 in the first round of the US Open.
Azarenka, last year's beaten finalist, put in a strong and wily performance, manipulating her opponent around the court, but in truth her victory owed as much to world number 99 Pfizenmaier's inadequacies as her own brilliance.
The Belarusian needed five break points to take the first game, eventually sealing it with a forehand volley, but she was more efficient from then on.
She broke again with some help from a favourable net cord for 3-0, while a succession of errors from her German opponent helped her take game five on her way to a clean sweep in the first set.
Though the one-way traffic continued at the start of the second, Pfizenmaier looked set to finally get on the board when she had two game points in game three, but she was tentative and Azarenka took full advantage.
Down 5-0 in the second and facing the dreaded 'double bagel' Pfizenmaier produced her best shot of the match - a forehand winner down the line - and duly took the applause of the remaining fans inside the Arthur Ashe stadium.
But it was the smallest of victories as Azarenka completed her comprehensive win in an hour and four minutes to book a second-round clash with Canada's Aleksandra Wozniak.
"It was a lot closer than the score [suggests]," Azarenka said. "I felt I really played well in the important moments.
"I felt I served pretty consistently.
"From here it's important to improve."
Louis van Gaal gets tough with Manchester United players, with Darren Fletcher and Luke Shaw berated in public and Phil Jones left looking bemused
CM Punk 'never ever ever' returning to WWE (so he probably will)
Tottenham and Arsenal in battle for Douglas Costa? Brazil forward opens up Shakhtar Donetsk exit possibility
Manchester United transfer news: Completed summer deals
James Rodriguez joins Real Madrid: World Cup top scorer completes £63m move
- 1 Apple has installed security backdoors on 600m iPhones and iPads, claims security researcher
- 2 Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Pro-Russian rebel 'admits to shooting down plane'
- 4 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash: 'Nine Britons, 23 Americans and 80 children' feared dead after Boeing passenger jet is 'shot down' near Ukraine-Russia border
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains