Day-2. 2016 US Open

The Second-Round is set, and routine wins defined Day-2 of the 2016 US Open in the new Arthur Ashe Stadium. Simona Halep nearly double-bageled Kirsten Flipkens. Stan Wawrinka, 6-time Champion Serena Williams and 2012 Champ Andy Murray all advanced in straight-sets. Venus Williams found herself in a battle with 22-year-old Kateryna Kozlova. The 2-time US Champ pulled-out the win in the decider, earning her 18th consecutive First-Round US Open victory.

Elsewhere (see “Upsets and Intriguing Results” below), Ivo Karlovic shattered the US Open single-match ace record on Tuesday…Bernard Tomic offered to place his balls in a heckler’s mouth over on Grandstand…and Ana Ivanovic fell early again.

[5] Simona Halep (ROU) def Kirsten Flipkens (BEL)

Final: 6-0, 6-2. Simona Halep was on-track to double-bagel Kirsten Flipkens on Tuesday. Serving for the match, up 6-0, 5-0 – admittedly, nerves got in Simona’s way, and Kirsten was able to put a pair of games on the board. However, with a decisive forehand up the line, Halep still sent Flipkens packing early. Kirsten scored a huge win in her Olympic debut, defeating World #6 Venus Williams in Rio’s opening round. Halep skipped the Summer Games, but had a very successful Summer scoring back-to-back wins in Bucharest and Montreal…then reaching the Cincinnati Semifinals just over a week ago. Simona comes into her 7th US Open as the World #5. She looks to improve on last year’s Semifinal run to reach her second career Grand Slam Final (Fell in the 2014 French Open Final to Maria Sharapova).

[3] Stan Wawrinka (SUI) def Fernando Verdasco (ESP)

Final: 7-6(4), 6-4, 6-4. This was a rewarding routine 2-hour and 18-minute routing for Stan Wawrinka on Ashe. Verdasco got the best of him two-months back in the First Round at Queens Club 2-6, 6-7(3). Stan stayed consistent through the first-set, eventually earning it in the tie-break. He protected serve the rest of the way, while attacking Fernando’s second serve. He only needed two breaks, and Stan was off the court in straight-sets. Stan was a Semifinalist here last year, his second-time a match removed from the Final. While Stan has won three titles this year, Andy Murray kept him from defending his French Open title, defeating the World #3 in the Roland Garros Semifinal. Milos Raonic took him out in the Australian Open’s Round of 16, while Juan Martin Del Potro humbled him in the Second Round at Wimbledon. Hey, no reason to panic – Juan did the same to the World #1 down in Rio. All eyes are on Stan’s mental focus moving forward…

[6] Venus Williams (USA) def Kateryna Kozlova (UKR)

Final: 6-2, 5-7, 6-4. Venus Williams had to work for her 18th consecutive Round-1 win at the US Open. She won the first on a break, then jumped ahead 3-0 in the second; but her 22-year-old opponent fought to get back on serve, leveled the set at 4-all, broke again to go up 6-5, then served-out set-2 to extend the match. In the third, Venus broke to go up 4-2, then got the yips serving for it up 5-3. Thankfully, Kozlova got the yips herself while serving to stay in the match…and Venus broke to secure the win. The 2-time US Open champ faces Julia Georges (GER) in Round-2.

[1] Serena Williams (USA) def Ekaterina Makarova (RUS)

Final: 6-3, 6-3 (63-minutes).¬†Williams and Makarova last played two-years-ago in the US Open Semifinals. Tuesday night, Serena dominated Ekaterina again. Williams has now won five of their six meetings on tour. Ekaterina carried confidence into Tuesday’s first night match. Earlier this month, she won Olympic Doubles Gold in Rio – not to mention, she’s played a ton on this court. She and Vesnina won the Doubles title here in 2014. Two years earlier, she captured the Mixed Doubles title with Bruno Soares. Serena was simply too good again – earning her 90th career US Open win in straight sets.

[2] Andy Murray (GBR) def Lukas Rosol (CZE)

Final: 6-3, 6-2, 6-2. Great serving from the World #2 to launch his 2016 US Open campaign. Rosol had plenty of looks early, getting ahead 15-30 on several Murray service games in the first set, but Andy was able to reset and power his way through the deficits. The 3-time Grand Slam champ has had a hell of a Summer. After winning his second Wimbledon title in July, he went on to earn his second consecutive Olympic Gold Medal at the Summer Games in Rio. He immediately flew to Cincinnati, where he reached his 19th-career Masters-1000 Final. He amassed 22-wins between the French Open Final and his Finals appearance in Cincinnati…and so far this year, has played in the Final of every Grand Slam. That’s slick. He’ll face a tricky net-minder Marcel Granollers in Round-2.

  • Ivo Karlovic (CRO) def Yen-Hsun Lu (TPE) 4-6, 7-6(4), 6-7(4) 7-6(5), 7-5. Ivo whacked 61-aces during the match, shattering the previous US Open record of 49 (set by Richard Krajicek in the 1999 US Open Quarterfinals).
  • Denisa Allertova (CZE) def [29] Ana Ivanovic (SRB) 7-6(4), 6-1. Mrs. Schweinsteiger is not having a good Summer. She is 0-3 since getting married; 0-4 since falling in the First Round at Wimbledon. She’s actually 0-5 since Mallorca’s Quarterfinal run in early June. She lost to Qualifier Ekaterina Alexandrova at the All England Club, fell in Round-1 of the Olympics in Rio to Carla Suarez Navarro, got beat in Cincinnati’s First-Round by qualifier Donna Vekic…and now, has fallen in straight-sets to World #89 in Round-1 of the US Open. That’s a derailment.
  • World #165 Richel Hogenkamp (NED) def Heather Watson (GBR) 6-2, 7-5. Since that endearing exchange with her Mum back in March after winning the Monterrey title, Heather Watson’s 2016 has taken an ugly turn. She managed a Round of 16 run in Miami, but has struggled to make it past first-rounds, or even out of qualifying, since. She’s now 4-11 (not counting Qualies) since April.
  • Janko Tipsarevic (SRB) def [29] Sam Querrey (USA) 7-6(4), 6-7(0), 6-3, 6-3. After his remarkable upset of Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon, this is a tough one to swallow for Querrey fans.
  • Katerina Siniakova (CZE) def Genie Bouchard (CAN) 6-3, 3-6, 6-2. Last month, Katerina Siniakova played through qualifying to reach her first WTA Tour level Final in Bastad. Today, she took-out former top-5 player Genie Bouchard, who is still trying to find a foothold in her comeback from “Concussiongate” at last year’s US Open.
  • Jared Donaldson (USA) def [12] David Goffin (BEL) 4-6, 7-5, 6-4, 6-0. HUGE result for the 19-year-old American.
  • Qiang Wang (CHN) def [23] Daria Kasatkina (RUS) 6-4, 2-6, 6-2. Kasatkina’s been slaying big names this Summer (Errani at the Olympics, Vinci and Stosur in Montreal) and came into the US Open with a career-high ranking of #24 in the world. World #62 Qiang Wang was clearly unimpressed.
  • Alexandr Dolgopolov and Phillip Kohlschreiber both retired with injuries
  • Steve Johnson (USA) def Evgeny Donskoy (RUS) 4-6, 1-6, 7-6(2) 6-3, 6-3. This was a CLUTCH turn-around. The top-ranked American erased six match points in the third-set…
  • Damir Dzumhur (BIH) def [17] Bernard Tomic (AUS) 6-4, 6-3, 4-6, 7-6(0). I’m not going to spend any time on this. You can google it on your own. Tomic had some comments for a fan during the match; comments that involved Bernard’s testicles and the fan’s mouth. Class.
  • Ana Konjuh (CRO) def [20] Kiki Bertens (NED) 6-3, 2-6, 6-4. Konjuh’s in the top-100 now. She reached the Semifinals in Bol back in May; and last year, won her first WTA Tour level title in Nottingham.