Venus vanquished at Western & Southern Open, Gauff ousted

By Sacha Pisani 23 August 2020 15
Venus vanquished at Western & Southern Open, Gauff ousted

Dayana Yastremska vanquished Venus Williams in a three-set thriller at the Western & Southern Open, while American sensation Coco Gauff fell at the first hurdle.

Yastremska sent former world number one Williams packing in the opening round of the WTA Premier tournament on Saturday.

Maria Sakkari claimed a statement win over teenager Gauff in New York amid the coronavirus pandemic, with the event usually held in Cincinnati.

Meanwhile, former champion Victoria Azarenka earned her first victory of the season.



A marathon 5-7 6-2 7-5 contest went in favour of 16th seed Yastremska, who eliminated Williams at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center.

Ukraine's Yastremska needed two hours, 36 minutes to see off seven-time grand slam champion Williams in their first meeting.

Yastremska – who overcame an injury scare in the first set – will next play Bernarda Pera, who defeated Heather Watson 6-1 3-6 6-3.



The 16-year-old Gauff was no match for Sakkari, who cruised to a 6-1 6-3 triumph.

Preparing for the upcoming US Open at Flushing Meadows, Gauff was comfortably beaten by Sakkari in just 65 minutes.

"I think I really played a good match. I played a match in Palermo, but for me, it doesn't count. It wasn't even a match [there], the way I played," Sakkari, who hit 14 winners and 21 unforced errors said. "Coming back the way I did, it's really important, and [I take] a lot of confidence from this."



Donna Vekic – the 15th seed – crashed out following a 6-2 6-3 loss to two-time Australian Open champion Azarenka.

Azarenka, who won the tournament in 2013, needed just over an hour to dispose of Vekic in the opening round.

Next up for Azarenka is either former US Open champion Sloane Stephens or Caroline Garcia.

Elsewhere, ninth seed Elena Rybakina lost 7-5 7-6 (8-6) to Ekaterina Alexandrova, while 11th seed Alison Riske went down 6-3 6-3 against Amanda Anisimova.

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Sacha Pisani