World number one Novak Djokovic cruised through his opening match at the Western & Southern Open in Cincinnati on Wednesday, but Stan Wawrinka had to dig deep to beat Borna Coric and conceded his thoughts had been far from tennis over the past few days.
Andy Murray, who beat Djokovic in the Rogers Cup final on Sunday and moved up to second in the world rankings, had a tough second round outing against Mardy Fish but came through 6-4 7-6(1), while Rafa Nadal also advanced after beating Jeremy Chardy.
“Even when I’ve been healthy, little things here and there have limited me”, she said.
“I think not just me, but a lot of people in America and outside America, are frustrated and concerned and really scared”, Williams said.
She’s already starting to get locked in on New York by limiting her responsibilities away from the court. The Serb has beaten Williams only once in nine meetings with the only win coming at in a last-16 clash at the 2014 Australian Open.
“And if something happens, it’s always good to know yourself, what’s going on and what you can do”. Last week I just felt, I don’t know, I just put too much pressure on myself.
Williams prevailed in 90 minutes and showed none of the uncharacteristic struggles that dogged her during last week’s semi-final loss to Swiss teenager Belinda Bencic in Toronto.
Williams revealed it “hasn’t been easy” since her sister and fellow champion Venus was diagnosed with Sjogren’s Syndrome, a condition that affects the immune system, in 2011. Maria Sharapovaalso dropped out with a lingering injury to her right leg. Gasquet will face seventh-seeded Marin Cilic in the third round. Djokovic saved three of five break points and won 5 of 15 break points.
Djokovic could only look on and smile as the world no. 42 Paire produced the shot of the match when he hit a between-the-legs victor in their second round match.
“Every match, it was getting tighter and tighter”, she said.
Williams is the first player to reach 45 match wins on the year – she’s 45-2 overall now.
Sixth-seeded Czech Tomas Berdych, who routed Spain’s Tommy Robredo 6-0, 6-1, and Ukrainian Alexandr Dolgopolov, a 6-3, 3-6, 6-4 victor over Poland’s Jerzy Janowicz, will also square off on Friday.