Madrid, Spain (4E Sports) – Spanish No. 1 Carla Suarez Navarro pulled off a huge upset before her home crowd, eliminating ninth seed Samantha Stosur of Australia, 7-6(7), 6-2, Monday in the first round of the Mutua Madrid Open.
It was a see-saw first set as Suarez Navarro took a 3-0 lead before Stosur won the next four games. Stosur had set point at 7-6 but Suarez Navarro saved it and took the first set after 66 minutes.
The two protagonists battled to a 2-2 deadlock in the second before Suarez Navarro broke away, reeling off four games in a row to clinch a seventh Top 10 win of her career.
“The draw wasn’t very good to me, and I knew the match was going to be difficult, so I was prepared with my tactics today,” Suarez Navarro said. “Sam is a difficult player and the first set was really difficult.”
In the second round, Suarez Navarro will face Kaia Kanepi, who defeated Flavia Pennetta in her opening match, 6-3, 7-6 (6), 6-2.
Stosur was not the only seeded player to bite the dust as fourth seed Agnieszka Radwanska was defeated by Great Britain’s Laura Robson, 6-3, 6-1.
Meanwhile, second seed Maria Sharapova survived a tough first set en route to a 7-5, 6-2 win over Alexandra Dulgheru.
Next up for Sharapova is American qualifier Christina McHale, who won a two-hour, 33-minute battle over Peng Shuai, 7-5, 5-7, 6-1. Sharapova has beaten McHale in both of their previous meetings.
Also advancing to the next round were third seed Victoria Azarenka, seventh seed Sara Errani, sixth seed Angelique Kerber and Kristina Mladenovic.
On the tournament’s men’s side, Poland’s Jerzy Janowicz defeated 18th-ranked American Sam Querrey, 6-3, 6-4, in 68 minutes to arrange a second-round battle against last year’s runner-up Tomas Berdych.
Querrey’s compatriot John Isner fared better, edging qualifier Guillermo Garcia-Lopez 7-5, 7-6(8) by hitting 13 aces and winning 83 percent of his service points. He will play Pablo Andujar in the next round.
Qualifier Robin Haase overcame Alexandr Dolgopolov, 6-3, 6-7(6), 6-2, to seal a second-round clash with seventh seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Other winners were Nicolas Almagro, Kei Nishikori, Milos Raonic, Kevin Anderson, Denis Istomin and Daniel Gimeno-Traver.