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Stephens and Brouchard upset in early matches

By: Anirudh Sridhar

Eugenie Brouchard

In Tuesday’s early draw the fifth-seeded Canadian Eugenie Bouchard was stunned by 24-year-old Italian Giorgi Camila in straight sets, 7-5, 6-4.

After a competitive first set, Bouchard fell in an early hole in the second set, trailing 5-2 and was never able to make a comeback against the 48th-ranked women’s player in the world. Bouchard was a mere 2-for-6 in break points whereas Camila capitalized on her opportunities, winning 4 of eight break points.

Even though Camila only completed 39-percent of her first serves, she won 80-percent of her first service points and 58-percent of her second service points.

Giorgi advances to take on Austrian Tamira Paszek, who made easy work of American qualifier Lauren Albanese in their first-round match, 6-3, 6-4.

And if Bouchard’s shocking exit wasn’t enough, defending champion Sloane Stephens was upset by Japan’s Risa Ozaki in her first round matchup just a little bit later, and it wasn’t even a close contest.

Last year Stephens has to fight not only the field but the fact that she never won a pro event before. This year she should have been swimming in confidence as she not only won last year’s event but earned a few more tournament titles.

But none of that mattered when she lost to Ozaki 6-2, 6-1.

Stephens was the two seed in this year’s tournament but never got her footing in her match. Ozaki broke Stephens’ first serve five times in seven attempts. Stephens was only able to win 25-percent of her second serve points, which didn’t help her cause too much either.

Stephens was the top American in the field that featured 10 women at the tournament’s start. Already, the field of Americans has been cut significantly. Heading into Wednesday, with Samantha Crawford slated for her first round match, there are only four American women’s remaining. Crawford will look to keep that number there, but will have a tough opponent in fourth-seeded Kristina Mladenovic.

McHale advances past Miculescu in straight sets

The only American woman to advance on Tuesday was Christina McHale, who bested her Romanian foe Monica Niculescu 6-3, 6-4.

The eighth-seeded Niculescu struggled to convert on break point opportunities and second service points. Niculescu won only 36-percent of her second service points, which led to eight break point opportunities for McHale.

McHale won five of those break points and saved four more as well. Although McHale only completed 56-percent of her first serves, she was helped by a 7-2 ace advantage. She will play fellow American Jessica Pegula in the second round. Pegula, the daughter of Buffalo Bills and Sabres owners Terry and Kim Pegula, beat Canadian Aleksandra Wozniak 6-2, 6-2 on Monday.

Dimitrov upset in opening match

The upsets did not stay put on the women’s side, Grigor Dimitrov, who has been in a career tailspin the last year and a half, continued to lose his form as he was upset by unseeded Brit Daniel Evans., 6-4, 6-4.

Dimitrov is far from where he was when he was ranked No. 8 in the world in 2014, but he is still always one of the most dangerous competitors out there, capable of going on a big run in any tournament. But this would not be one.

Dimitrov struggled defending Evans’ first serves while Evans won 67-percent of his attempts. He also missed on over half of his break points.

Querrey comes backs to top Fratangelo

Eight-seeded American Sam Querrey gave countryman Bjorn Fratangelo a pretty cold birthday present, coming back to win back-to-back sets to reach the third round of the Citi Open on Tuesday. The two met once before in Paris earlier this year and Frantangelo pulled the upset, and early in the match he looked like maybe he just had Querrey’s number by grinding out a 7-6 (5) set.

But Querrey, who is recently coming off a Wimbledon performance in which he snapped Novak Djokovic’s 30-match major winning streak and went to the major quarterfinals, rallied back with two 6-4 sets to get the victory in the match that lasted just over two hours.

Querrey’s serve was on fire and leading the way. He out-aced Fratangelo 22-8 in the match and that led to a 46-for-53 performance on first serves. Fratangelo had no response for that.

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Anirudh Sridhar

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