Tennis

Rogers Cup: Women endure multiple rain delays in Montreal

Canadian ​Francoise Abanda saw her first-round match in Monteal postponed because of the weather. Abanda will face qualifier Saisai Zheng of China on Tuesday.

Eugenie Bouchard, Aleksandra Wozniak to play Tuesday

Samantha Stosur of Australia won a hard-fought match against Heather Watson of Great Britain in the opening-round of the Rogers Cup in Montreal. (Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

Numerous rain delays lasting a combined four hours forced tournament organizers in Montreal to rejig the Rogers Cup first-round schedule on Monday.

Canadian Francoise Abanda saw her match postponed and will now face qualifier Saisai Zheng of China on Tuesday.

That meant that Gabriela Dabrowski was the only Canadian to see action on Monday. The 24-year-old, along with teammate Alla Kudryavtseva, lost in doubles 6-3, 6-2 against Romanians Simona Halep and Monica Niculescu.

Canadians Eugenie Bouchard and Aleksandra Wozniak were not in action on Monday.

The 42nd-ranked Bouchard will meet Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic in the first round on Tuesday, while Wozniak takes on Italy's Sara Errani.

Kvitova, Stosur avoid upsets

Petra Kvitova is one step closer to another Rogers Cup championship.

The Czech native, who won the Canadian tournament back in 2012, cruised to a first-round win over Magda Linette of Poland 6-1, 6-2 on Monday night.​

Kvitova overpowered her opponent, needing just 59 minutes to eliminate the 86th-seeded Linette.

Playing her first tournament since Wimbledon, Kvitova showed no signs of rust. The 26-year-old broke Linette four times — twice in each set — and ended the match with three aces.

Earlier in the day, Australia's Samantha Stosur won a hard-fought opening-round match against Heather Watson.

Stosur avoided the upset, beating the 67th-ranked Watson in straight sets 7-5, 6-3.

The tournament's 13th seed struggled in the first set but found her rhythm in the second, breaking Watson's serve on three occasions.

"To get through in straight sets, I'm pretty happy," said Stosur, who reached the Rogers Cup final in 2011. "Overall I thought I served pretty well."

Tough delays

Qualifier Camila Giorgi of Italy upset American Sloane Stephens 7-6 (2), 7-6 (4), with both sets going to a tiebreak. Giorgi will face countrymate Roberta Vinci in the second round.

Ukraine's Elina Svitolina made quick work of qualifier Jennifer Brady, winning 6-2, 6-4.

In the afternoon session, Barbora Strycova overcame numerous rain delays to beat Caroline Garcia of France 2-6, 6-3, 6-3.

Strycova, ranked 22nd in the world, came from behind to defeat 22-year-old wild-card Garcia in a session plagued by five rain delays.

On two occasions, Strycova and Garcia returned to the court only to be ushered away just moments later when the rain restarted.

"It's really difficult," said Strycova of the constant interruption in play. "These delays are tough because you always have to be ready. After the fourth delay, I went on the court and played a set and a half and I was tired."

After losing the first set, Strycova battled back to win the next two. The Czech native will face sixth seed Venus Williams in the second round.

Following the last of the rain delays, Strycova held serve then broke her opponent to take a 5-3 lead in the third set.

On match point, Garcia, ranked 31st in the world, fired her forehand into the net.

"It was very close," said Garcia. "I started that match very well. She had trouble adapting. But then there were many tight games. It was difficult for me to make a difference. I made mistakes."

Also in the afternoon session, American Madison Brengle defeated Russia's Ekaterina Makarova 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 while Daria Gavrilova topped Annika Beck 6-4, 6-3.

The odds are stacked against the Austrian Gavrilova in the second round. Her next opponent is fifth-seed Simona Halep.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.