Muguruza retires in Beijing
Originally published on 02/10/17 00:00
The world No.1, struggling with a virus she picked up in Wuhan last week, retired in the early stages of the second set of her duel with Barbora Strycova. The Czech was leading 6-1 2-0 when the Spaniard decided she was no longer fit enough to continue.
“It’s very tough, I got a virus in Wuhan and I couldn’t perform today,” admitted the Wimbledon champion. "It's an easy way to think: 'don't go on the court' but I wanted to have a last chance going on the court, just hit [a] few balls, see how I'm going to feel, try to turn things around. I don't want to retire before the tournament starts."
Strycova, who will take on Julia Georges next, said: "It's never easy to win this way – but it happened and I am in the second round. That is how it is and sometimes things happen that way. I just kept fighting and was happy I won those three games at the beginning because that was a turning point."
Sloane Stephens is yet to win a match since romping to the US Open title last month and she came unstuck against Christina Mchale. America’s most recent Grand Slam champion bagged just three games in a first round scrap with her compatriot in China’s capital.
Also in the first round, Elena Vesnina was required to play just one set before her opponent, Magda Linette, retired injured and there were also victories for Coco Vandeweghe, Shuai Peng and Varvara Lepchenko.
Dominika Cibulkova was another seed that fell at the first hurdle. Elise Mertens defeated the Slovakian 7-6(4) 6-1.
Angelique Kerber’s poor form shows no sign of abating as she was beaten in the second round by Alize Cornet. The former world No.1 had won all three of her previous meetings with the Frenchwoman but she was not victorious on this occasion.
Cornet, who reached the last eight in Wuhan last week, was a 6-4 6-4 winner over the No.10 seed.
Caroline Wozniacki made it through to the third round with a second success over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova within the past three weeks.The Dane defeated the Russian in the final of Tokyo last month and she dropped just four games in their latest encounter.
The men’s ATP 500 event kicked off in Beijing on Monday and No.5 seed Roberto Bautista Agut began his campaign with trouble-free 6-1 6-3 win over the world No.221, Ze Zhang, in just 60 minutes.
Pablo Carreno Busta’s hopes of reaching the World Tour Finals were dealt a blow as he was bundled out the competition by Steve Darcis. The Belgian eased to a 6-0 6-4 win over the US Open semi-finalist.
There were also opening round victories for Aljaz Bedene, Mischa Zverev, Dusan Lajovic and Fabio Fognini.
At the ATP 500 event in Tokyo, Kevin Anderson, in his first outing since reaching the final of the US Open, prevailed against Gilles Simon 6-2 7-6(6). Top seed, Marin Cilic dismissed Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3 6-2 and there was also delight for wildcard entry Yasutaka Uchiyama – who overcame Franko Skugor 6-3 3-6 6-1.
Bernard Tomic’s latest attempt to salvage a disappointing campaign began with a 6-3 3-6 6-3 win over Joao Sousa while Ryan Harrison, Jiri Vesely and Adrian Mannarino also progressed.