French Open: Naomi Osaka narrowly avoids catastrophic shock in 1st round

Agence France-Presse

Posted at May 29 2019 12:33 AM

Naomi Osaka, who had arrived in Paris still feeling the effects of a hand injury suffered in Rome, survived a near-upset in Round 1. Christian Hartmann, Reuters

Japan's Naomi Osaka battled back from a set and a break down to defeat Slovakia's Anna Karolina Schmiedlova 0-6, 7-6 (7/4), 6-1 on Tuesday to reach the Roland Garros second round.

Osaka, bidding to add the French Open to her US and Australian Open titles, was within a whisker of becoming just the second top seed to lose in the first round in Paris in the modern era after Angelique Kerber in 2017.

World No. 90 Schmeidlova, who hadn't won a match at the tournament since 2014, twice served for the tie in the 10th and 12th games of the second set.

At one stage, she was just two points away from a famous victory.

But Osaka, who had arrived in Paris still feeling the effects of a hand injury suffered in Rome, battled back to set-up a second round duel with former world number one and two-time major winner Victoria Azarenka.

For more sports coverage, visit the ABS-CBN Sports website.