US Open 2020: Karolina Pliskova is beaten by Caroline Garcia in second round

US Open 2020: Karolina Pliskova is beaten by Caroline Garcia in second round
Caroline Garcia hit 30 winners to Karolina Pliskova’s 13
Venue: Flushing Meadows, New York Dates: 31 Aug-13 Sept
Coverage: Selected live radio and text commentaries on BBC Radio 5 Live Sports Extra, BBC Sounds, the BBC Sport website and app.

Top seed Karolina Pliskova was knocked out of the US Open in the second round with a heavy defeat by France’s Caroline Garcia.

Pliskova, runner-up in 2016, lost 6-1 7-6 (7-2) to the world number 50.

Czech world number three Pliskova was the highest ranked player here in the absence of Australian Ashleigh Barty and Romania’s Simona Halep.

Meanwhile, other seeds to tumble were Elena Rybakina (11), Marketa Vondrousova (12) and Alison Riske (13).

But there were victories for sixth seed Petra Kvitova, eighth seed Petra Martic and Estonian 14th seed Anett Kontaveit.

‘I am not a robot’ – Pliskova

Six of the world’s top 10 players were already absent from the behind-closed-doors tournament amid the coronavirus pandemic.

And Pliskova’s exit may further improve Serena Williams’ chances of a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam singles title in an open women’s draw.

Pliskova hit just one winner in a poor first-set performance and fell a break down early in the second – smashing a racquet in frustration – before improving her level to carve out two set points.

But she failed to convert them and Garcia went on to take it to a tie-break, which she dominated.

“I thought she played great tennis in the first set,” Pliskova said. “She was just playing super aggressive, going for her shots.

“I maybe didn’t play my best. But that’s how it is sometimes. I’m not a robot, so I don’t have to play every day amazing.”

Garcia, who has won seven tour titles, will face American world number 41 Jennifer Brady in the next round.

Kvitova & Kerber through but other seeds tumble

Two-time Grand Slam champion Kvitova came back from a break down in the first set and saved a set point to beat Ukrainian Kateryna Kozlova 7-6 (7-3) 6-2.

Former champion Angelique Kerber also came through a tough encounter, winning 6-3 7-6 (8-6) against fellow German Anna-Lena Friedsam.

But Kvitova’s Czech compatriot Vondrousova – the 2019 French Open runner-up – lost 6-1 6-2 to Belarus’ Aliaksandra Sasnovich.

Later on Wednesday Japanese fourth seed and 2018 champion Naomi Osaka takes on Italy’s Camila Giorgi.

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