Top seed Alison Riske Amritraj shown the door | Tennis News


CHENNAI: Anastasia Gasanova caused the biggest upset of the WTA Chennai Open as she packed off top seed Alison Riske Amritraj in straight sets 6-2, 6-3 in the opening round here on Tuesday evening. The Russian reigned supreme in a contest that lasted an hour and 29 minutes. Alison, ranked world No. 23, had a forgettable day on court as she managed to hold serve only on two occasions in the entire match. In what was a see-saw opening set, both players traded breaks early. Anastasia took a 3-1 lead after breaking Alison in the fourth game of the first set. The experienced American hit back in the very next game as the first set read 3-2. Anastasia, rated 147th in the world, once again broke her opponent to take a 4-2 lead. Anastasia held her serve and once again broke her opponent to wrap up the opening set in 41 minutes.
Alison took the lead in the second set by breaking Anastasia. However, Anastasia turned things around to break Alison in the next game and subsequently held serve to lead 2-1 in the second set. Thereon, it was Anastasia who called the shots and crossed the finish line on her second match point. “I didn’t expect this but (having said that) I wanted this win badly,” said Anastasia after the win. The turning point, according to Anastasia, came in the second set. “It was in the beginning of the second set because I know myself — I can get nervous during the match. I decided to calm myself and focus more,” she said.
Anastasia, who had lost in the first round of US Open qualifiers, revealed that she wasn’t in the best frame of mind ahead of this tournament. “I wanted to take a break after the US Open (qualifiers) because it was a terrible loss and I was very sad. But when a tournament in India came up, I was like ‘let’s go out there and give my best’,” said Anastasia.
The 23-year-old felt the conditions were a big challenge. “The court is on the slower side. The balls were heavy because of the humidity. I am happy that the match was in the evening because if it had happened during the day — it would have been hard,” she said. Anastasia will next be taking on Katie Swan who scored a 6-1, 6-2 win over Arianne Hartono.
Ankita manages only one game: India No. 1 Ankita Raina’s stay in the tournament was short-lived as she was beaten by Maria Tatjana of Germany 6-0, 6-1 in an hour and 16 minutes. The contest proved to be a mismatch from the word go. Maria, the 2022 Wimbledon semifinalist, needed just 31 minutes to run away with the opening set 6-0. Maria was clinical in her approach and never allowed her opponent an opening during the course of the clash.
While Ankita failed to win a single game in the first set, she managed to win one in the second. Despite the one-sided score-line, Maria lauded her opponent for putting up a fight. “I am really happy because I knew it wouldn’t be an easy match. She is the No. 1 Indian player and the crowd was behind her and it was a satisfying win,” she said.
Asked if there was any jet lag since she arrived on the eve of the tournament, Maria said, “With two kids (accompanying me) there is no jet lag.” Maria was cheered on by her husband and her children from the stands. She was seen training with her elder daughter Charlotte who is 8. “She is like my little coach whenever we play together. My family has been having a great time here,” Maria mentioned.





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