Wozniacki Pulls Off One of the Biggest Wins to Date in the Women’s Singles Draw
The top contenders are looking to take care of business and while there have been some upsets, when looking at the 2023 WTA US Open update, it is business as usual for the top six seeded players.
No. 1 seed and defending champion Iga Swiatek won’t need to face a seeded player until the fourth round at the earliest.
No. 4 seed Elena Rybakina looks to have a more challenging draw if she plans on squaring off with Swiatek.
In the bottom half of the bracket, Ons Jabeur and Coco Gauff are lurking as obstacles for No. 2 seed Aryna Sabalenka. Jabeur has reached the final in three of her last five Grand Slam tournaments.
No. 3 seed Jessica Pegula will be the featured night match on Thursday.
Swiatek (+200) has the best odds to win the US Open followed by Sabalenka at +350. Gauff comes in at +500 with Rybakina (+650) and Pegula (+750) as other top contenders.
Here’s a quick look back at the early play in the women’s singles draw in New York.
It was hard to know what to expect when former World No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki decided to return to the WTA tour after three years ago.
Wozniacki lost two of her first three matches as she played on tour for the first time since the 2020 Australian Open. There were more than a few people curious about what the US Open results would be for the popular Wozniacki.
A 6-4, 6-4 loss to No. 45 Varvara Gracheva in the first match in Cincinnati didn’t bode well as Wozniacki prepared to play n the US Open for the first time since losing in the third round in 2019.
After a straight-set win over qualifier Tatiana Prozorova, she announced her return to tennis with a 7-5, 7-6 win over No.11 seed Petra Kvitova in one of the matches making the most news early on in the 2023 WTA US Open draw.
Seeds Shown The Door
Kvitova had plenty of company among seeded players falling early.
Caroline Garcia, seeded seventh, couldn’t get by qualifier Yafan Wang in the opening round. Garcia broke through in New York in 2022 with a run to the semifinals.
The Grand Slam struggles continued for No. 8 seed Maria Sakkari as she was eliminated by Spain’s Rebeka Masarova 6-4, 6-4 in the first round. Sakkari has lost in the third round in each of her last three Grand Slam tournaments. It is a far cry from 2021 when Sakkari advanced to the semifinals at both the French Open and US Open.
Barbora Krejcikova, seeded 12th, fell 6-4, 7-6 to Lucia Bronzetti as she won’t be repeating her strong showing in 2021 when Krejcikova advanced to the quarterfinals.
Veronika Kudermetova, the No. 16 seed, lost to American Bernarda Pera 7-5, 6-4 in the first round. It was one of the US Open scores to make it into the headlines.
No. 21 seed Donna Vekic was eliminated in three sets by American qualifier Sachia Vickery.
What About the Americans?
No. 3 Jessica Pegula and No. 6 Coco Gauff give the 2023 WTA US Open draw two Americans among the top-10 seeds.
Pegula, who comes in at No. 3 in the WTA rankings, had no problem with veteran Camila Giorgi in her first match.
After dropping the first set to qualifier Laura Siegemund, Gauff set up one of the more intriguing early-round matches against teen Mirra Andreeva. Gauff won 6-3, 6-2 to set up a showdown with Elise Mertens as Gauff will go from playing a 16-year-old to a 27-year-old.
“I’m really happy with how I played,” Gauff told the media after the match. “The last time I played her, we had a longer match. I was really trying to take advantage of when I was in the lead and continuing to be aggressive.”
No. 17 seed Madison Keys also won her opening match without too many issues.
Unseeded Jennifer Brady is through to the third round after winning 6-2 in the third set against No. 24 seed Magda Linette. She gets Wozniacki next.
Venus Williams and Sloane Stephens were the biggest names among the 13 American women to fall in the first round. Stephens was the US Open title in 2017 while Williams captured the title in both 2000 and 2001.
Vickery, Sofia Kenin and Peyton Stearns joined Pegula and Keys as Americans to get out of the first round in the bottom half of the bracket.
There have been no Americans in the last three US Open women’s singles titles and the last time that happened four years in a row came from 2004-07. Stephens was the last women’s singles champion from the U.S. as she topped fellow American Madison Keys in the 2017 title match.
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