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Cincinnati Open: Simona Halep, Johanna Konta through to Round of 16

Simona Halep dispatched Taylor Townsend 6-4, 6-1, while Johanna Konta beat Kiki Bertens 6-3, 6-3 to enter the third round of Cincinnati Open.

tennis Updated: Aug 16, 2017 12:26 IST
Cincinnati Open,Simona Halep,Johanna Konta
Simona Halep defeated Taylor Townsend 6-4, 6-1 to reach the third round of Cincinnati Open. (Twitter )

Simona Halep and seventh seed Johanna Konta became the first players to reach the third round of Cincinnati Open. Halep dispatched qualifier Taylor Townsend 6-4, 6-1, while Wimbledon semifinalist Konta beat Kiki Bertens 6-3, 6-3.

Ninth-seeded Venus Williams cruised into the second round, needing just 66 minutes to dispatch fellow American Alison Riske 6-2, 6-0. Williams will next face Ashleigh Barty, who beat Varvara Lepchenko 6-4, 6-4 in a matchup of two qualifiers.

(Read | Juan Martin del Potro, Nick Kyrgios advance in Cincinnati, Milos Raonic pulls out)

“I hadn’t played in a while, so I wasn’t really sure what to expect,” said Williams, the Wimbledon finalist who lost in the round of 16 last week at the Rogers Cup in Toronto. “I know she likes a flat ball and is a retriever and is just feisty, and the courts are really slow, too. Today was like about being measured and being patient and trying to just capitalize on the match.”

(Read | Maria Sharapova awarded main draw wildcard at US Open)

Meanwhile, Garbine Muguruza got her final U.S. Open tune-up event off to a flying start as the Wimbledon champion stormed by Brazilian qualifier Beatriz Haddad Maia 6-2 6-0 to reach the third round.

Spanish fourth seed Muguruza, fresh off a quarter-finals loss to eventual winner Elina Svitolina at Toronto last week, needed only 65 minutes to earn the straight sets win over Haddad Maia and book her spot in the round of 16.

After trading breaks with Haddad Maia over the course of the first four games, Muguruza found another gear and went on to win the final 10 games of the match.

Another qualifier, Aleksandra Krunic, advanced with a 6-4, 6-2 upset of 12th-seeded Jelena Ostapenko, while 10th-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska was knocked out by unseeded Julia Goerges 6-4, 6-4.

First Published: Aug 16, 2017 09:14 IST