LINZ, October 8, 2019 (by Alessandro Boroch)
World No. 57 Alizé Cornet opened Tuesday’s main draw action on Centre Court with a straight-set-victory (6-4, 6-4) over 2017 Upper Austria Ladies Linz champion Barbora Strycova. It was already their tenth career meeting and Cornet is leading the head-to-head with seven victories against the Czech.
Afterwards, the match between No. 6 seed Maria Sakkari and Stefanie Vögele should have taken place on Centre Court, but Maria Sakkari declared her withdrawal due to a right wrist injury. 15-year-old CoCo Gauff was announced as the lucky loser, and she only had forty minutes to prepare for her upcoming first-round match against Stefanie Vögele from Switzerland. Despite not having had much time for match preparation, CoCo Gauff went on winning the first-round match in straight sets 6-3, 7-6.
“I was being told that I’m in the main draw only forty minutes before the match started,” said Gauff. “Everything had to go pretty fast, I knew nothing about my opponent.”
The 15-year-old US-American from Atlanta will face Kateryna Kozlova, who beat Anna Blinkova on Monday, in the second round tomorrow.
— WTA Linz (@WTALinz) October 8, 2019
Anna-Lena Friedsam from Germany probably scored the biggest upset of the day, beating No. 2 seed Belinda Bencic in three sets 6-4, 2-6, 6-2, after one hour and 54 minutes. It was her first ever victory against a TOP-10-player. In view of the WTA Finals, today’s loss has been destructive for Belinda Bencic, who now needs to accept a wildcard into the main draw of Moscow or Luxembourg next week, to remain in the race for a spot at the WTA Finals in Shenzhen.
“I think it was a really good match from both of us,” Bencic said after the match “I think she just played incredibly well to have such a run. If she could play every day like this, that’d be amazing. I think I played very good, so there wasn’t much I could do; maybe here or there, I could have done something different. Otherwise, I’m happy with the way I played.”
Apart from that, No. 5 seed Julia Görges beat World No. 78 Margarita Gasparyan in straight sets 6-4, 6-2, to set up a second-round battle against compatriot Andrea Petkovic. Laura Siegemund became the fourth German who advanced into the second round in Linz, after battling through a match, that lasted three hours, and in which she had to save two match points against 22-year-old Fiona Ferro from France (6-2, 5-7, 7-5).
Donna Vekic looked in impressive form as she eased past Polona Hercog from Slovenia 6-1, 6-1 in just 51 minutes. Elena Rybakina, Alison Van Uytvanck and Kiki Mladenovic also scored straight-set-victories over their opponents Nina Stojanovic, 7-6, 6-2, Ysaline Bonaventure 6-3, 6-2 and Katerina Siniakova 6-1, 7-5.
RESULTS – October 08, 2019 Women’s Main Draw Singles – First Round
E. Rybakina (KAZ) d N. Stojanovic (SRB) 76 62
A. Cornet (FRA) d B. Strycova (CZE) 64 64
L. Siegemund (GER) d. F. Ferro (FRA) 62 57 75
[LL] C. Gauff (USA) d. S. Vögele (SUI) 63 76
 J. Goerges (GER) d. M. Gasparyan (RUS) 64 62
A. Van Uytvanck (BEL) d. [LL] Y. Bonaventure (BEL) 63 62
K. Mladenovic (FRA) d. K. Siniakova (CZE) 61 75
A.-L. Friedsam (GER) d.  B. Bencic (SUI) 64 26 62
 D. Vekic (CRO) d. P. Hercog (SLO) 61 61