Top Seed Barty Survives Test, Djokovic, Nadal Advance while Suarez Navarro Falls in Return to Roland Garros After Cancer Treatment
(June 1, 2021) World No. 1 Ashleigh Barty of Australia survived a three-set match while nursing an injury to advance to the second round of the French Open on Tuesday in Paris. Barty had her left thigh bandaged and needed a medical time out during the match.
The top ranked woman hailing from Australia held on to a 6-4, 3-6, 6-2 win over American southpaw Bernarda Pera. The 2019 champion of Paris now has an 8-match win streak at Roland Garros.
Carla waving goodbye to an empty stadium with Sloane clapping in the background. 💔
Her last match in Paris. pic.twitter.com/3S86tGKfic
— . (@Ashish__TV) June 1, 2021
Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro made a return to the French Open after treatment for cancer. Although she lost to American Sloane Stephens 3-6, 7-6(4), 6-4, it was a personal victory to be able to return to the court. The 33-year-old, who was supposed to have retired last year but was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. She plans to retire later this year.
“Was a long time, really tough moments, tough months,” Suárez Navarro said in her post-match news conference. “But, well, every time I had on my mind that I want to be here, I want to come back. Roland Garros is one of my favorite tournaments, so really clear that my first tournament will be this one.”
Nothing but respect. ❤️🤗
— Roland-Garros (@rolandgarros) June 1, 2021
Other seeds advancing on Tuesday were:  Elina Svitolina,  Karolina .Pliskova  Jennifer Brady,  Maria Sakkari,  Karolina Muchova  Coco Gauff,  O. Jabeur,  Anett Kontaveit and  Etkaterina Alexandrova.
Former finalist Venus Williams lost in straight sets to Alexandrova.
Venus Williams weighs in: pic.twitter.com/iJ6EKssfcU
— Jon Wertheim (@jon_wertheim) June 1, 2021
Petra Kvitova had to withdraw from the tournament due to an ankle injury sustained after her post-match news conference on Monday.
— Tennis Panorama News (@TennisNewsTPN) June 1, 2021
In men’s action, No. 1 Novak Djokovic dismissed Tennys Sandgren 6-2, 6-4, 6-2 in a night session match while 13-time Paris winner Rafael Nadal had a challenge later in the third set in his match against Alexei Popyrin, but won 6-3, 6-2, 7-6 (3).
Djokovic is now 17-0 in first round matches at Roland Garros.
Nadal is seeking his 21st major title and 14th Paris crown. He has won his last 26 straight sets at the French Open. He is now 101-2 at the French Open for his career.
Seventh seed Andrey Rublev, of Russia lost his first round of the French Open to German Jan-Lennard Struff 6-3, 7-6 (6), 4-6, 3-6, 6-4.