(CNN) — The last time Serena Williams had played with at Arthur Ashe Stadium — a dramatic reduction to Naomi Osaka from the 2018 US Open final — it directed her to start seeing a therapist and also kept her from needing to pick up a tennis racket.
It is a story that’s been retold often: A year ago, that a Naomi Osaka had prevailed against her , 6-4 at New York to win her first important, but controversy overshadowed it .” Serena Williams battled with seat umpire Carlos Ramos, culminating when he docked her a match for calling him a”thief.” After the game, while the trophy was recognized by Osaka, boos rang around Arthur Ashe Stadium. Osaka wept.
The disposition Monday felt different.
A Serena Williams entered the stadium to roars from the crowd. The opponent of the 37-year-old American was a one in five-time grand slam champion Maria Sharapova — though remarkably the two formerly had never faced each other in Flushing Meadows. This did not have the sense of a US Open first-round game.
The outcomes were also the same as the previous 15 years: Serena Williams won 6-1, 6-1 in less than one hour, improving her record against the Russian to 20-2 as she attempts her 24th important title.
Serena Williams addressed the crowd during her meeting .
“Thank you for supporting me,” she said. “I have said it once, however, I’ve had a whole lot of tough matches and a lot of tough losses, but coming out tonight makes it all worthwhile.”
A US Tennis Association spokesman told CNN the Ramos wouldn’t serve as chair umpire for some of the Williams sisters’ matches in the 2019 US Open.
When asked in her post-match press conference because of her response to the USTA deciding to not have the Portuguese umpire officiate her matches, Serena Williams replied:”I don’t know who that is.”
Sharapova has been ranked 87th heading into the US Open. She will fall from their top 100.
“This really is a really distinct chapter in my profession,” Sharapova said.
“It’s not an easy road. It has never been. However, I moved through a shoulder procedure about four weeks ago. It’s a big deal to find myself playing in a night game at the usa Open with folks excited about the matchup. I’m fortunate to be a part of that.
“It is simple to be discouraged after a game in this way. But if I am personally frustrated, I wake up , I still do not feel as though I want to go outside, train, and be better, that is more discouraging than the result.”
The match highlighted a beginning to the tennis season that had eight US Open champions playing on Monday’s final major.
Venus Williams Federer triumph
One of those former winners is Venus Williams, who commanded China’s Zheng Saisai 6-1, 6-0. The American is at the first round of the US Open in her career. She is the oldest player in the singles draw by 24 years of the women .
“I really love, love, love my job,” Venus Williams said to ESPN online daddy. “I get to work out. Get a six pack and my job is to stay healthy. You do not get better than that. I love everything I do, and I’ll do it provided a I can.” She will face No. 5 Elina Svitolina of Ukraine at the second round.
Novak Djokovic, aiming to be the very first guy to win back-to-back names in the US Open as Roger Federer at 2008, started his title defense Monday with a 6-4, 6-1 triumph Roberto Carballes Baena of all Spain. The win improves Djokovic listing at the US Open . The Serbian is in his final 35 games at grand slam tournaments.
“It was a solid performance,” Djokovic stated. “I think I can still play , but it is kind of anticipated to the very first game and then, you know, I am hoping I can build from here.”
The third-seeded Swiss hasn’t won this grand slam event in 11 decades while Federer is among the favorites. And while Federer and Rafael Nadal have never faced each other the winner currently has confronted a Nagal. That could be Sumit Nagal of India, a qualifier ranked 190th who has never won a tour-level game. After a hiccup in losing the first set, Federer went on to win 4-6, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4. His record at the US Open today stands at 19-0.
“It was a challenging first set for me since I had the guide so things were looking good for mepersonally, however (Nagal) came right back and played really powerful,” Federer, who ended with 57 unforced errors, said to ESPN. “Credit to him to really play a solid first group. I was missing a great deal of balls and serve a bit better since that also let down me and hopefully I tried to cut back on the mistakes. It came back in time. At the conclusion, I actually played great tennis, so I am happy.”
Pliskova survive 1st-round games to progress
There was a big surprise to begin the US Open in the girls singles draw. But catastrophe has been avoided, and the pursuit for the entire world No. 1 ranking is underway.
No. 2 Ashleigh Barty defeated a dreadful start, bouncing back after being down a set, to conquer No. 80 Zarina Diyas of Kazakhstan 1-6, 6-3, 6-2. The Australian is one of 3 girls, linking No. 3 Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic and No. 4 Simona Halep of Romania, in contention to recover that the world No. 1 ranking, which is presently held by Osaka.
The French Open champion, barty, is the frontrunner, tracking Osaka by just 105 points. She also held the top spot for seven weeks.
“Not the perfect beginning, not the ideal start, but it’s what it is,” Barty, who had 36 unforced errors in the match, said. “We could discover a way after that to get in the match and be patient and really only kind of lock and wait till I got exactly the right chunks and right patterns that I desired.
“This was probably the largest change in the second and third is I was able to get more of these patterns more regularly and ultimately build pressure to create more opportunities to split.”
Meanwhile, the Pliskova, who wants to reach the quarterfinals to have a chance endured two tiebreaks against fellow Czech Tereza Martincova, who’s ranked 138th, ahead of the second round.
“Not ideal, but I’m through so that is critical,” Pliskova said. “Obviously, like I said before, the first rounds they’re always just a bit nervous, I would say, for the majority of the players. Doesn’t help that you just play somebody from the country, because then it adds some additional nerves”
Osaka should defend her title to maintain the No. 1 ranking. She’ll play Russian Anna Blinkova on Tuesday.