Aegon Classic Birmingham | Broady scores great win
British No.2 Naomi Broady notched up one of the biggest wins of her career with a bruising 7-6(3) 6-0 win over World No.39 Alize Cornet in the opening round of the Aegon Classic Birmingham. Broady’s impressive win sets up a potential second round encounter with two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova.
I was really trying to mix the ball up a lot today, use my slice and then hit the next ball as hard as I could, just to keep mixing up the pace and not give her a rhythm. Naomi Broady
“I was really trying to mix the ball up a lot today, use my slice and then hit the next ball as hard as I could, just to keep mixing up the pace and not give her a rhythm,” said Broady, ranked 111 in the WTA World Rankings. “Alize is great mover, she’s a very consistent player, so I knew if I played with a lot of rythmn then I would be playing into the way she wants to play. I tried to stay as far away from her game style as much as I could.”
With temperatures on court at Edgbaston Priory Club touching 29 degrees centigrade, Broady’s grass-court prowess allowed her to overcome a 0-3 deficit in the first set before she went up a gear in the second.
Before she can think about Broady, Kvitova must first get past Lucky Loser Tereza Smitkova in Tuesday’s opening match on the Ann Jones Centre Court in what will be Kvitova’s first match on grass following her return to competition at Roland Garros.
Earlier, Heather Watson gave world number five Elina Svitolina a scare before falling to 6-2 5-7 6-3 defeat.
The Ukrainian, the highest-ranked player in the tournament following the withdrawal of world No1 Angelique Kerber with a pulled hamstring, proved too strong for Watson.
“It was a tough draw,” Watson admitted. “Elina is a great player. She is very consistent with her game but also with her results. We’ve played quite a few times before and all of them have been three sets and long battles.”
British No.1 Johanna Konta makes her 2017 Aegon Classic Birmingham debut on Tuesday when she plays Lesia Tsurenko in a big to continue the run of form which took her to the final of last week’s Aegon Nottingham Open.
2015 Roland Garros champion and former Wimbledon runner-up Garbine Muguruza, seeded six in Birmingham, is up against Russian qualifier Elizaveta Kulichkova; while third seed Dominka Cibulkova and dangerous unseeded floater Lucie Safarova face off in one of the most eagerly anticipated matches of day two.