By Ros Satar
(May 26, 2013) PARIS – Serbia’s Ana Ivanovic came through a sticky spell to win in three sets against Croatia’s Petra Martic, in her first round match 6‑1, 3‑6, 6‑3.
Ivanovic, who has not made it past the fourth round since winning Roland-Garros in 2008, started the more aggressive with an early break.
The crowd started to try and get behind Martic, who played a bit more competitively for the next couple of games, pushing with break point chances in the fifth game, but still just not quite able to take them.
Ivanovic needed just the one set point to take the lead.
It was a better start by Martic in the second set, as Ivanovic’s serve started to falter a little, with the set quickly getting away from the Serbian.
Martic looked tight serving out for the second set, starting with a double fault, and handing Ivanovic a lifeline to get to deuce with another one, before finally nailing the set on her second set point.
In almost a repeat of the first set, Ivanovic raced ahead to a 5-1 lead, in fairness more down to Martic leaking errors.
Martic rallied a little, bringing breaking Ivanovic while serving for the match, but at the second time of asking, Ivanovic sealed the match.
Ivanovic said: “I knew I had to step up and be aggressive and put pressure on her.
“And I’m just very happy to close that match.”
“Obviously it was a bit of up‑and‑down game today,” the Serb added. I started really well, played very aggressive. And in the second set I kind of let her back in a little bit. She started serving better, going for her shots and mixing up a lot of dropshots and slices.
“Then in the third set I stepped up again. Once, you know, I was 5‑Love up she started swinging a little more. And I still had chances, still played good tennis, I felt. But I’m really happy. I managed to close the match at 5‑3.”
Ivanovic will face either Chanelle Scheepers or Mathilde Johansson in the second round.