29 May 2017

Round One exits for Kerber, Erakovic at Roland-Garros

9:03 am on 29 May 2017

World women's tennis number one Angelique Kerber's nightmare season has hit a new low after being dumped out of the French Open 6-2 6-2 by 40th-ranked Ekaterina Makarova.

Marina Erakovic

Marina Erakovic Photo: Photosport

The German becomes the first top seeded woman to lose in the opening round of the tournament since the sport turned professional in 1968.

Cutting a troubled figure on court, a world away from the feisty player who last season battled her way to two grand slam titles, Kerber lacked the pace and power to trouble a fellow left-hander.

The 29-year-old Kerber has struggled this year, withdrawing from the Madrid Open with a thigh injury and going down in straight sets to qualifier Anna Kontaveit in Rome.

But today's setback, albeit on a surface she has no great affection for and having made an opening-round exit in Paris last year, threatens to leave her season in tatters.

New Zealander Marina Erakovic was beaten in straight sets in the first round by American Shelby Rogers.

Petra Kvitova made an emotional and convincing return to competition, showing no ill effects from the stabbing injury to her hand, with a 6-3 6-2 first-round victory against American Julia Boserup.

The Czech, who spent five months out of the game after needing emergency surgery last December when she was stabbed in her left, playing hand during a burglary, set up a second-round meeting with either Russian Evgeniya Rodina or American Bethanie Mattek-Sands.

The twice Wimbledon champion, a semi-finalist at Roland Garros in 2012, looked poised and focused, treating the sparse Court Philippe Chatrier crowd to a few exquisite drop shots and lightning-quick forehands.

- Reuters