After losing her opening match in women’s doubles alongside older sister Venus, Serena Williams returned to the court looking to advance to the third round of the Olympic women’s singles tournament. But in France’s Alize Cornet, Williams was up against an opponent who had won their last three meetings, so nothing was to be taken for granted. But after being pushed to a tiebreaker in the first set, the world’s top-ranked player grabbed control in the second set to win the match, 7-6 (5), 6-2.
Serena finished the match with five double faults and 36 unforced errors, but many of those problems occurred in the first set. Williams did what’s expected of great players in the second, removing any doubt and advancing to the third round. Next up for Williams is Ukraine’s Elina Svitolina, who is winless in four prior meetings between the two.
Madison Keys also advanced in the women’s singles draw, as she beat France’s Kristina Mladenovic 7-6, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (5). Next up for Keys is Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro, a straight set winner over Croatia’s Ana Konjuh. Also winning Monday was the American doubles tandem of Jack Sock and Steve Johnson, straight set winners over Colombia’s Robert Farah and Juan-Sebastian Cabal.
The United States did not enjoy such fortune in other doubles matches, however, with teams being eliminated in both men’s and women’s doubles. Brian Baker and Rajeev Ram were eliminated by Austria’s Oliver Marach and Alexander Peya in three sets, with the women’s doubles team of Coco Vandeweghe and Bethanie Mattek-Sands losing in straight sets to Switzerland’s Martina Hingis and Timea Bacsinsky.