DAY 1 Live from the U.S Open, A View from the outside courts!

So, after having my first week off from blogging since January, I decided to spend some ‘me’ time in Jamaica! Well earned IMO! A fantastic country and one I would wholeheartedly recommend to anyone that fancies a holiday in paradise! I didn’t want to leave, I’m not going to lie! The plus side in all this was a trip to New York and Flushing Meadows on the way back to the UK!

I went with a ground admission pass today and saw Diego Schwartzman crush his compatriot, Charly Berlocq in a very comfortable straight sets. Schwartzman continuously worked the point, moving his opponent around and then firing a winner when Berlocq was far enough out of position! I also noticed how long Schwartzman stayed behind after, signing autographs and having pictures with fans. As you can see, I was one of those! Legend!

Next up, I went to watch Alison Van Uytvanck, who was in a final set against Saisai Zheng. Zheng seemed to be using the slice to full effect in the decider and when AVU didn’t take her chance at the start of the third, her head dropped! Zheng taking the decider 6/1.

I couldn’t help but then go and watch a bit of Gilles Muller v Bernie Tomic! So much is always said about Bernie, so I wanted to see how he performed here against a very solid and effective professional! I joined it at one set all! I have to say, I don’t think Tomic did too much wrong today, there was a slight concern with a leg injury. If you are struggling for motivation though, playing someone like Muller is a bit of a nightmare. Losing the third would have been tough for the Ozzy! For me though, Bernie gave it his all today, it’s yet another win notched for Gilles and there have been a lot this year! 4 sets did it here!

Finally, I thought I would watch Mirjana Lucic-Baroni versus Monica Puig. Now the Croat looked to have this wrapped up at 6/4 *5/1. Puig once again showed a lot of fight today, roared on by a large support crew from South America. She saved match points in the second and then went on to win it in the breaker! I think the Croat let the crowd get to her and the noise from the adjacent court, where Thai-Son Kwiatkowski (NCAA Singles Champion) was giving Mischa Zverev a real fright, also seemed to be causing her problems! Lucic-Baroni also blew a break lead in the decider and another 3 match points before finally beating Puig in a final set breaker. A top atmosphere on Court 11 under the floodlights and one of the reasons why I have wanted to visit this event during the first week.

Elsewhere there were some casualties and some convincing winners! Jo Konta put in a below par performance against Aleksandra Krunić and paid the price! Maria Sharapova beat second seed Simona Halep in a fascinating first round matchup, in 3 sets! Sloane Stephens continued her impressive form by solving the tricky problem that is Roberta Vinci! We all know this could have been a nasty one! A special mention to Sachia Vickery, who has got through qualies and now a round here after beating Natalia Vikhlyantseva. I actually missed this as it was first on and I was still suffering from yesterday’s travelling exertions! Sorry Sach! I will do all I can to see her second round match with Sofia Kenin. There were also wins for Petra Kvitova, Garbine Muguruza, Venus Williams and Caroline Wozniacki, but sadly, Heather Watson lost to Alize Cornet in straights.

In the Men’s there were wins for Sam Querrey (over Simon), John Isner, Jo-Wilfred, Marin Cilic and Lucas Pouille. Brits Cameron Norrie and Kyle Edmund also both progressed! Jack Sock fell to Jordan Thompson in 5! The Australian beat Muzza at Queens, so we know he is capable of an upset! Incidentally, Tsonga plays Shapovalov next! Should be a good one that! Sascha Zverev is currently in action against Darian King under the lights on the Arthur Ashe! The Barbadian giving a good account of himself so far!

On to day 2!

Andy Del Potro

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