Rouen | Trevisan ousts Osaka, as Andreeva advances

The 1st-round of the Open Capfinances Rouen Metropole, the WTA 250 in France, was completed on Wednesday, which saw Martina Trevisan down wild-card Naomi Osaka in straight sets, while Mirra Andreeva, Sloane Stephens and Magda Linette won their 2nd-round matches to advance to the quarter-finals.

I have never been the type to make excuses for myself, I just have to really do better. I think today, obviously, I didn't hit too many great shots and I could have done better. I'm kind of thinking I didn't do too bad but also I'm pretty hard on myself. Naomi Osaka

Trevisan halted Osaka’s return to clay at the first hurdle, knocking out the former World No 1 in the opening round, 6-4 6-2, after an hour and 32 minutes.

Osaka, who returned from maternity leave in January and was competing as a wild-card, had not played a clay-court match since Roland Garros 2022, where she lost in the 1st-round to Amanda Anisimova.

In fact, the Japanese has not won a match on clay since beating Anastasia Potapova from Russia in the 1st-round of Madrid in 2022.

Trevisan, a former No 18 from Italy, however, owns an impressive clay-court resume, and has reached the Roland Garros quarter-finals, in 2020, as well as the semi-finals in 2022, while she has also won a title on clay, at Rabat 2022.

Last week, she reached the quarters of the Zaragoza ITF W100 event, while Osaka was helping Japan defeat Kazakhstan in the Billie Jean King Cup Qualifiers on the indoor hard courts of Tokyo.

Osaka, though, refused to blame the lengthy trip from Japan to France for her loss.

She has never reached a tour-level final on any surface other than hard courts, admitting the switch to clay was not an easy transition.

“It was really difficult for me… it was my second time hitting on this type of court,” said Osaka, a 4-time Grand Slam champion. “I think that overall I could have done better but I’ve tried my best.

“I have never been the type to make excuses for myself, I just have to really do better,” she added, confirming her presence at next week’s Madrid Open. “I think today, obviously, I didn’t hit too many great shots and I could have done better. I’m kind of thinking I didn’t do too bad but also I’m pretty hard on myself.”

Osaka has said she would like to play in the Paris Olympics, but needs to go through an appeals process after failing to make a mandatory 2 appearances for Japan in the BJK Cup during the current Games cycle.

Her world ranking has risen from 831 to 192 since her come-back, although she has not gone beyond the quarter-finals in the 7 tournaments she has played.

Trevisan broke Osaka in the first game, only for the former US and Australian Open champion to strike straight back.

Osaka converted just 1 of her 8 break chances in the opening set, which a resilient Trevisan won after nudging ahead in the 9th game, and the Italian carried that momentum into the second, breaking the rusty Japanese again in the 3rd and 7th games to claim the win, only her second in 9 tour-level matches this year.

Trevisan will next face No 3 seed Anhelina Kalinina from Ukraine as she bids to reach her first quarter-final since Hong Kong last October.


16-year old Mirra Andreeva downed her countrywoman Elina Avanesyan to reach the quarter-finals in Rouen

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Meanwhile, 5th-seeded Russian, Andreeva, and No 6 seed Sloane Stephens of the United States, both warded off upsets by completing sweeps to also advance to the quarter-finals in Rouen.

Andreeva downed her countrywoman Elina Avanesyan, 7-5 6-4, while Stephens ousted the Czech Republic’s Karolina Pliskova, 6-3 6-2.

Stephens made her first quarter-final of season with an impressive win over Pliskova in a 2nd-round battle between former Top 3 players.

16-year-old Andreeva had to battle hard to come out on top of a 1-hour, 41-minute contest, in which she repeatedly went up a break in both sets on Avanesyan, only for the valiant World No 67 to keep pegging her back.

Andreeva dazzled with her court-craft at times, particularly a finely cut drop-shot which she was able to pull off from the most unlikely of positions, but Avanesyan’s combination of rock-solid groundstrokes and sudden injections of pace down the line meant that almost every game was tightly contested.

Appropriately, though, Andreeva was eventually able to sneak over the line with a point that was very much in character, a combination of drop-shot, lob and sharply angled forehand pass.

Andreeva will play either Trevisan or Kalinina as she bids to make her first tour-level semi-final.

Elsewhere, Slovakia’s Anna Karolina Schmiedlova advanced after her opponent, Diane Parry retired with the score standing at 6-3, 3-1 in her favour, while Poland’s Magda Linette was an easy winner over qualifier Natalija Stevanović from Serbia, 6-2 6-1, and Elena-Gabriela Ruse, another qualifier, from Romania, took out Japan’s Nao Hibino, 6-2 6-1.

France’s Varvara Gracheva defeated Bulgarian Viktoriya Tomova, 6-2 3-6 7-5, in the only match of the day that saw a third set.


The match between Naomi Osaka and Martina Trevisan attracted a bumper crowd in Rouen

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