Wildcard Marta Kostyuk triumphed in a clash of rising 19-year-olds in the first round of the Mutua Madrid Open, defeating Clara Tauson 6-3, 6-2 in 1 hour and 25 minutes.
Kostyuk will next face either another 2002-born talent, No.9 seed Emma Raducanu, or Tereza Martincova in the second round. A fourth member of Generation 2002, No.17 seed Leylah Fernandez, also advanced, overcoming qualifier Andrea Petkovic 6-1, 1-6, 6-4.
Despite being peers, this was the first meeting between Kostyuk and Tauson at any level, including juniors. It was the Ukrainian, ranked 19 spots lower at No.60 to Tauson’s No.41, who was sharper throughout.
Kostyuk came up with a series of dazzling highlight-reel shots to take control of the match: swashbuckling net play, backhands lasered down the line and delicately finessed dropshots. Tauson, playing her first match since retiring in the first round of Miami due to heat illness, was both more cautious in her shot selection and more error-prone on routine rally shots.
The Dane briefly threatened a comeback when she broke Kostyuk back for 2-2 in the second set, only for Kostyuk to come out on top of a four-deuce tussle to regain the advantage immediately. From there, Kostyuk motored home, winning 15 of the last 20 points of the match.
Fernandez survives, Teichmann bounces Kvitova
Fernandez outlasted former World No.9 Andrea Petkovic in 1 hour and 59 minutes to win her Madrid main-draw debut. The 2021 US Open runner-up came back from a 2-0 deficit in the third set to prevail in her first meeting against Germany’s Petkovic.
The Canadian teenager will face Jil Teichmann, who handed three-time champion Petra Kvitova her earliest Madrid exit in 12 years, winning 6-3, 7-5 in 1 hour and 21 minutes.
Highlights: Teichmann d. Kvitova
“To be fast, honestly,” Teichmann said, when asked what the key to the match was. “I had to be really reactive. She plays really fast. I knew that from before, I played her on hard courts, actually. I have a lot of respect for Petra. She’s one of the greatest.”
The Barcelona-born Swiss has previously been a dangerous unseeded draw in Madrid. Now ranked No.35, Teichmann made her Madrid debut last year and proceeded to upset No.5 Elina Svitolina in the first round after saving six match points.
Looking forward to the second round, Teichmann defeated Fernandez in straight sets in their only previous meeting, which came at a Billie Jean King Cup qualifying tie in 2020 on indoor hard court.
More to come…