2016 US Open champion Angelique pulled off a stunning comeback to win her first-round match at the US Open, as she overcame Dayana Yastremska of Ukraine, 3-6, 6-4, 7-6(3).
Reported by WTA Staff
In their only prior encounter, Yastremska beat former World No.1 Kerber via retirement en route to the 2020 Adelaide final. But Kerber was able to grit out an incredible victory this time around in nearly two-and-a-half hours, spoiling Yastremska’s first Grand Slam match since 2020 Roland Garros.
No.16 seed Kerber led by a break twice in the first set, but Yastremska charged back each time, winning the final four games of the opener. However, Kerber leveled the match by taking the only service break in the final game of a much more serene second set.
An early flurry of breaks in the decider settled with Yastremska serving for the match at 5-4, but the Ukrainian dropped serve routinely and the players eventually moved into the tiebreak. There, three-time Grand Slam champion Kerber took control, leaping out to a 5-1 lead before clinching the topsy-turvy affair.
“In the third set, when we played the tiebreak, everything can happen,” said Kerber, after the match. “I was just trying to staying focused, play every single ball as good as I can. I think that it was more for me that I won it mentally today. I’m happy about that, how I came back in the third set.”
Kerber will next face another Ukrainian, Anhelina Kalinina. Kerber might remember Kalinina well, as Kalinina upset the German in the first round of Roland Garros earlier this year.