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Ostapenko ´angry´ after Roland Garros exit, Venus Williams falls at first hurdle

27 May 2018 23:29

Jelena Ostapenko reflected on a "terrible day at the office" after the defending champion suffered a surprise loss to Kateryna Kozlova and Venus Williams also crashed out in the first round of the French Open on Sunday.

Ostapenko sent shockwaves around Paris and far beyond when she claimed a first tour-level title at Roland Garros last year, but it was a very different story 12 months on.

It was the 66-ranked Kozlova's turn to raise eyebrows when the main-draw matches got under way, beating the fifth seed 7-5 6-3 on Court Philippe Chatrier.

Williams was another seed to fall, the seven-time major singles champion going down 6-4 7-5 to Chinese outsider Qiang Wang.

Johanna Konta, the 22nd seed, also made an early exit on a glorious day, losing 6-4 6-3 to Yulia Putintseva.

There was no such trouble for US Open champion Sloane Stephens, who cruised to a 6-2 6-0 thrashing of Arantxa Rus and the in-form Elina Svitolina also advanced in straight sets at the expense of Ajla Tomljanovic.

 

OUT-OF-SORTS OSTAPENKO WITH ERROR-STREWN DEFEAT

Ostapenko was a shadow of the player who defied the odds to lift the Coupe Suzanne Lenglen last year.

The 20-year-old Latvian racked up 48 unforced errors and 13 double faults as she became the first French Open champion to lose in the opening round for 13 years, Kozlova improving her record over the world number five to three wins out of three.

"I think it was terrible day at the office today for me. In general I played maybe like 20 per cent of what I can play," said Ostapenko.

"I made like 50 unforced errors and so many double faults. I couldn't serve today. Everything together just brought me a really bad result."

She added: "I'm really disappointed and so angry. I'm really angry and I just want to turn back the time."

 

DEJA VU FOR VENUS 

Williams was knocked out of the Australian Open in the first round in January and experienced the same fate on the famous clay in the French capital.

Wang broke the veteran ninth seed four times to pull off the second top-10 win of her career and claim the first shock of the tournament before Ostapenko's exit.

Williams made 35 unforced errors and praised her conqueror, who beat the 37-year-old for the first time at the third attempt.

"I think [Wang] just played well," the former world number one said: "All the times we've played, she's played great. I think her game just got better and better during the match."

 

KONTA FAILS AGAIN, STEPHENS AND IN-FORM SVITOLINA SAIL THROUGH

Konta will have plenty of time to prepare for the grass-court season after suffering another French Open failure.

The 2017 Wimbledon semi-finalist has not won a solitary match in the main draw at Roland Garros and bowed out with a whimper against Putintseva.

Stephens took just 49 minutes to dispatch the unseeded Rus, while Svitolina followed up her triumph in Rome with a 7-5 6-3 first-round win.

Alize Cornet advanced in her homeland, while fellow seeds Barbora Strycova and Anett Kontaveit came through their opening matches.

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