Errani and Pedone are running on the grass of the Veneto Open: they are in the 2nd round

Giorgia Pedone is the second Italian player in the second round of the tournament staged on the grass courts of the Gaiba Tennis Club (photo Creativite Idea)

It was the most anticipated of Super Tuesday. And Sara Errani did not betray the expectations of the Veneto Open promoted by the Veneto Region and of the many fans who flocked to the stands of the Central Court, passionate and noisy, who accompanied her until after 7pm towards the second round (she will face the Ukrainian Katarina Zavatska). It took her just over an hour and a quarter to defuse the proactive tennis of the Serbian Natalija Stevanovic, the same game that last year had taken her to the third round of Wimbledon (after having passed the qualifiers). But ‘Sarita’, as the captain of the Italian national team Tathiana Garbin encouraged her on the sidelines, had no moment of slipping and managed to finish with a score of 6-2 6-4. Thanks to the awareness given by her experience and her usual determination that she never goes away, despite 37 years and many seasons on the circuit. In Gaiba there is therefore Italy that runs fast, and does so on two tracks, that of the ‘old guard’ and that of the new recruits on the launching pad. Yes, because it didn’t take more than one set for Giorgia Pedone, on court no. 1, to show what she is capable of. The heatstroke that at the beginning of the second set knocked out Hailey Baptiste, US Top 100 player and number 6 seed in the draw, does not take anything away from the 19-year-old Sicilian’s passage through to the round or from her performance. “I feel good on grass, a few years ago I would never have said it but now that I’m collecting some more experience I understand that I can do well here too”, she said beaming at the end of the match. And in fact she took away time and breathing space from her opponent even before she had the chance to get through the round. Giorgia built the points one after the other, adapting perfectly to the surface, while Baptiste, in trying to stay in the wake, had no choice but to invent some truly impossible shots: including a passer in tweener and a volley from midfield. field with a very high difficulty coefficient. Spectacular, but impromptu points: the 6-1 in the first set never left any doubt as to who was in full control of the match. Immediately at the start of the second, then, the request for a medical time-out and the decision to say enough is enough.

Now Giorgia will face the Philippine Alexandra Eala in the second round, a very difficult client. A few months younger than the Italian (born in 2005, ours is 2004), the athlete based at the Tennis Academy is a left-handed player who is physically very prepared, mentally solid and gifted with a left-handed tennis style that knows how to adapt well to the grass. All weapons that on her debut at the Veneto Open promoted by the Veneto Region allowed her to overcome the French Carole Monnet in a tight match, made even more complex by the great heat that arrived today on the Gaiba courts. Weather conditions which did not prevent, Pedone-Baptiste aside, from consolidating a trend that began yesterday, made up of extremely hard-fought and prolonged matches to expand a program of 11 matches to complete the grid of the first rounds. Fatal first rounds for several seeded teams. in the morning the news arrived of the withdrawal from the tournament of the first seeding favourite, the German Tatjana Maria, forced to leave Italy for personal reasons (replaced by the Czech lucky loser Anna Siskova, then defeated by the Romanian Irina Bara). Orphaned of the number 1 seed, the number 2 (the Argentinian Maria Lourdes Carle) and the number 3 (the Spanish Jessica Bouzas) also said goodbye to the company, giving way respectively to the Russian Kamilla Rakhimova, number 88 in the ranking WTA, and to the Romanian Anca Todoni, a 19 year old still out of the top 100 but in excellent shape and growth (she comes from the success in the WTA 125 tournament in Bari last week, on red clay, and is fresh from the best ranking). Tennis is always unpredictable, even more so on grass. A concept that Gaiba is also importing into Italy.

Central – 1.30pm
Susan Bandecchi vs (7) Erika Andreeva RUS
(8) Bernarda Pera USA vs Aliona Falei BLR
Alison Van Uytvanck NICE vs Kamilla Rakhimova RUS Not before 6pm

Court 1 – 2.00 pm
Elixane Lechemia BETWEEN / Kimberley Zimmermann NICE vs Angelica Moratelli ITA / Conny Perrin SUI
Irina Bara ROU vs Ankita Raina IND
(1) Anna Danilina KAZ / (1) Yifan Xu CHN vs. Hailey Baptiste USA / Alycia Parks USA

First round: Bara (Rou) b. Siskova (Cze, LL) 7-5 1-6 6-3, Pera (Usa, 8) b. Semenistaja (Lat) 6-3 6-4, Eala (Phi) b. Monnet (Fra) 6-3 7-5, Pawn (Ita, Wc) b. Baptiste (USA, 6) 6-1 1-0 ret., Rakhimova b. Carle (Arg, 2) 3-6 6-4 6-4, Todoni (Rou) b. Bouzas Maneiro (Esp, 3) 6-2 6-4, Parks (Usa, Q) b. Kalieva (USA, Q) 7-6(5) 7-5, Zarazua (Mex, 5) b. Hruncakova (Svk) 7-6(6) 6-2, Errani (Ita, 4) b. Stevanovic (Srb) 6-2 6-4, Zavatska (Ukr) b. Topalova (Bul) 6-2 6-2, Montgomery (USA) b. Ricci (Ita, Wc) 6-1 6-2.

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