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Tennis roundup: Novak Djokovic earns first win of 2023

Sep 25, 2022; London, United Kingdom; Novak Djokovic (SRB) serves against Felix Auger-Aliassime (CAN) in Lavers Cup singles. Mandatory Credit: Peter van den Berg-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Peter van den Berg-USA TODAY Sports

Top-seeded Novak Djokovic of Serbia won his first singles match of the season Tuesday, beating France’s Constant Lestienne 6-3, 6-2 to reach the second round of the Adelaide International 1 in Australia.

Making his first appearance in the event since capturing the 2007 title at age 19, Djokovic won 44 percent of the points (17 of 39) on his opponent’s first serve in the 75-minute match.

In other action among seeded players on the men’s side, No. 3 Daniil Medvedev of Russia defeated Italy’s Lorenzo Sonego 7-6 (6), 2-1 (retired), No. 6 Jannik Sinner of Italy ousted Britain’s Kyle Edmund 6-3, 6-2, No. 7 Denis Shapovalov of Canada rallied for a 2-6, 6-4, 6-3 win over Australia’s Rinky Hijikata and No. 8 Karen Khachanov of Russia ousted Argentina’s Pedro Cachin 6-2, 6-4. Spain’s Roberto Bautista Agut scored a 4-6, 6-3, 6-4 upset of No. 4 seed Andrey Rublev of Russia.

On the women’s side, No. 7 Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia was a 6-1, 6-3 winner over Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic. China’s Qinwen Zheng knocked out No. 6 Anett Kontaveit of Estonia 6-1, 4-6, 7-6 (7) and Czech Marketa Vondrousova upset No. 8 Ekaterina Alexandrova of Russia 4-6, 6-3, 6-2. Other winners were Romania’s Sorana Cirstea, American Claire Liu and Victoria Azarenka of Belarus.

Tata Open Maharashtra

No. 8 seed Aslan Karatsev cruised to a 6-1, 6-3 win over Spain’s Pablo Andujar in the opening round in Pune, India.

The Russian won 88 percent (23 of 26) of the points on his first serve in the day’s only match involving a seeded player.

Italy’s Flavio Cobolli defeated India’s Mukund Sasikumar 6-4, 7-5, Germany’s Maximilian Marterer outlasted Elias Ymer of Sweden 6-2, 3-6, 6-3, Spain’s Pedro Martinez rallied for a 3-6, 7-5, 6-3 defeat of India’s Ramkumar Ramanathan, and Dutchman Tim van Rijthoven ousted Radu Albot of Moldova 6-4, 6-4.

ASB Classic

Top-seeded Coco Gauff saved four of six break points and rolled to a 6-4, 6-1 win against Germany’s Tatjana Maria in the opening round in Auckland, New Zealand.

Gauff’s 82-minute victory was the exception as the three other singles matches all went to three sets.

Britain’s Emma Raducanu survived a 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 battle with Linda Fruhvirtova of the Czech Republic, Romania’s Elena-Gabriela Ruse defeated New Zealand’s Erin Routliffe 6-2, 4-6, 6-4, and Russian Anna Blinkova outlasted Italy’s Elisabetta Cocciaretto 6-4, 4-6, 7-5.

United Cup

Hubert Hurkacz defeated Stan Wawrinka 7-6 (5), 6-4 and Magda Linette took down Jil Teichmann 5-7, 6-4, 6-1 to lead Poland to a 3-2 win against Switzerland in Group B action at the United Cup in Brisbane, Australia.

Poland will face Italy in the City Final on Wednesday, with the winner advancing to the United Cup Final Four in Sydney. The Italians advanced with a 5-0 sweep against Norway in Group E.

In Perth, Borna Gojo overcame a 5-3 deficit in the deciding set and clinched Croatia’s 3-1 Group F win against France with a 7-6 (5), 3-6, 7-6 (5) defeat of Adrian Mannarino. Croatia advanced to the City Final against Greece, who defeated Belgium 4-1 in Group A.

The United States and Great Britain already had advanced to the Sydney City Final on Wednesday in the inaugural 18-team event.

–Field Level Media