Venus survives scare; Roddick knocked out

  • Print This Article
May 28, 2012 10:25 AM EDT
Venus Williams
Williams won 15 of 16 points when she reached the net, and of the points she has won through two rounds, nearly one-third have come when she moved forward."

Venus Williams made a nervous return to the Grand Slams, but found enough ammunition to see out 19-year old Paula Ormaechea in the first round of the French Open on Sunday.

Venus, who is making her first Grand Slam appearance after being diagnosed with Sjogren's syndrome, fought back from a set down to win 4-6, 6-1, 6-1.

The American will most likely face Agnieszka Radwanksa in round 2. Radwanksa, who fill face Bojana Jovanovski in her first round match, beat Venus in their previous meeting in Miami in March.

Venus pulled out of the US Open after announcing she had Sjogren's, an auto-immune disease which causes joint pain and fatigue. Venus, who is yet to win a title at Roland Garros, has made a sketchy comeback ever since and will be glad to go through in the first round.

"It's a big accomplishment for me to even be here," a relieved looking Venus said after the match. "A lot of it I have to figure it out; it's physical and emotional and all kinds of different things."

Andy Roddick, however, ha d no answer to Frenchman Nicolas Mahut, going down in four sets 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 6-2.

"I move just horrendously out there," the American said in his post match press conference. My first step is just so bad on this stuff. I feel like I'm always shuffling or hopping or not stopping or something."

Roddick has always struggled on the red clay of Roland Garros, having just made the fourth round once in ten attempts. This was his fifth first round defeat at the French Open.

"I just feel like I get exposed too easily. I feel like I'm not set on most shots.

"If you're not set, it's tough to get much of a flow going. When you don't have much of a flow going, it lends itself to sporadic play and it all adds up.

"You can't fake it out there. These are the best tournaments in the world. It's tough to lie out; my footwork on this stuff is just really, really bad."

Among other Americans, 20-year old Melanie Oudin ended her Grand Slam misery by easing past Sweden's Johanna Larsson 6-3, 6-3. Oudin has suffered in the Majors ever since making a surprise quarterfinal run in the US Open in 2009 as an 18-year old.

"I was putting so much pressure on myself," Oudin, who has seen her ranking tumble down to 269, said. "Now I feel like I am the underdog."

In other matches former champ Ana Ivanovic of Serbia, Australia's Sam Stosur and Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova made it to the next round with comfortable victories.

Ivanovic cruised past Lara Arruabarrena-Vecino 6-1, 6-1 while Stosur beat Elena Baltacha 6-4, 6-0. Former world number one Kuznetsova eased to a 6-1, 6-3 victory over Mirjana Lucic.

In the men's draw home favourite Jo-Wilfried Tsonga overcame a sluggish start to beat Andrey Kuznetsov 1-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-4 while Juan Martin Del Potro also had to play four sets to get the better of Albert Montanes 6-2, 6-7 (5-7), 6-2, 6-1. 



Get the Most Popular Stories in a Weekly Newsletter
© 2015 All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.
  • Print This Article

Join the Conversation

  • Get Connected
  • Share
  • Like Us on Facebook
  • @sportswr
  • Recommend on Google
Real Time Analytics