(August 28, 2023) FLUSHING, New York – On day one of the 2023 US Open, top seed Iga Swiatek of Poland had her bakery shop in effect when she served Sweden’s Rebecca Peterson a bagel and a breadstick or in other words a 6-0, 6-1 win on Monday in less than an hour.
The woman from Poland was very happy about her performance: “I could play proactively from the beginning and just didn’t stop. I’m just happy that this was such a nice first round, because first rounds are usually tricky.
“Also, I’m happy that I kind of had time to implement all of the stuff that I practiced on.’
Her next match will be against Daria Saville.
“Well, honestly, I have to analyze her game,” Swiatek said to media, “because I think we may have played once before her injuries or surgery that she has. I’m not sure what’s her story, you know. But she’s a great person. We always, when we pass each other, we say hi and she’s really positive.
“So about the game, I can’t really say a lot. I will for sure get prepared, but, you know, it really doesn’t matter for me. I have my kind of image of tennis that I want to play and show, and I’m just going to try and focus on myself, you know.
“Every match is, you know, really important. Doesn’t matter for me who’s gonna be on the other side or what court it’s gonna be. I just want to play my best game that’s possible any day. Yeah, I’ll get ready, for sure.”
Following Swiatek on Arthur Ashe Stadium, No. 10 Frances Tiafoe beat fellow American, wild card Learner Tien 6-2, 7-5, 6-1.
“I thought it was pretty good overall,” Tiafoe said of his performance. “Obviously first round, never opened up on Arthur Ashe before, so that was an honor in itself. Obviously, it’s a testament to how I’ve been playing and obviously with the run last year. So it’s fun.
“Obviously playing someone you don’t know, is so young, and they’re coming after you. Ultimately good.
“I would like to hopefully take as many chances as I had today, I mean, when you’re 8 for 25 on breakpoints, that’s not too good, but ultimately it’s done in straights, so that’s all that matters.”
Tiafoe as asked about the retirements of John Isner and Jack Sock: “
“It’s crazy, man. Grew up watching John obviously. Watching him play the Legg Mason back in the day, as it used to be called in D.C., how solid he was. He was a hell of a player for so many years, top 20 a lot of his career, winning 250s for fun. He was a great leader for American tennis.
“Jack obviously had a great career. You know, the last couple of years he really struggled. It was tough. I’m happy he’s being able to wash his hands with it and being okay with it.
“Get along with both of those guys really well, especially Jack. Happy he’s moving on and he’s happy ultimately.”
The biggest upset of the day so far is No. 4 seed Holger Rune losing to Roberto Carballes Baena 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 6-2.
Rune was not happy with his court assignment as he was on a smaller court – court 5.
“It’s not difficult, but it’s different. You’re more close to all the people. It’s a nice atmosphere. So, I mean, it’s no problem with the court. I just didn’t expect to play on that court.
“I feel like it’s normal. I mean, as best as you get in the ranking, it’s more, you know, how you say, benefits you should get with playing in better conditions. So I think that’s a normal way and it’s also how ATP, like, it’s how they do with all the players. But they didn’t do it with me here.
“That’s obviously disappointing, but not going to blame the court on the loss. He played very, very solid. Credit to him.”
The first Top 10 seed to fall in Flushing on the women’s side of the draw was No. 8 seed Maria Sakkari. The Greek woman lost to Rebeka Masarova, 6-4, 6-4 on Court 17 in 87 minutes.
It’s been a long road of a comeback for 2020 champion Dominic Thiem. The Austrian stopped No. 25 seed Alexander Bublik 6-3, 6-2, 6-4.
Thien assessed his performance during his news conference: “it was a very good match basically from the first moment on. It’s a pretty special victory, because it’s the first since two-and-a-half years on Grand Slams.
“I think, I don’t know, six or seven Grand Slams without a match win. So it’s great. Especially here at the US Open with all the past and all the memories I have here.”
He talked about his road back to his former form: “It was a very good road for me, I would say. Especially personally I was learning a lot, you know, so I don’t want to miss anything in this road, but obviously tennis-wise or sports-wise was not easy all the time.
“So that’s why I’m even happier that I got the win today. First win on Grand Slam since a while. I had some good previous weeks as well with the first finals after the injury.
“So it’s feeling good, and I’m really looking forward to the next one.”
Thiem will play young American southpaw Ben Shelton in the second round.
More to follow…..