Tuesday at the St. Petersburg Ladies Trophy was all about first-round matches and our photographer Jimmie48 worked long hours to give us a closer look at what happened on the court, as well as behind the scenes. Five Russian players were in action, as well as two former champions.
In an all-Russian encounter, 19-year-old qualifier Kamilla Rakhimova recorded a topsy-turvy 6-1 6-7(2) 6-1 victory over wildcard Daria Mishina. This was the world No.403 Rakhimova’s second WTA main-draw win, while the 150th-ranked Mishina was making her WTA main-draw debut.
Svetlana Kuznetsova, who enjoys a first-round bye as the fourth seed, spent the day talking to the media and painting.
Qualifier Clara Tauson forced eighth seed Daria Kasatkina into a second-set tiebreak despite mid-match injury woes, but the Russian two-time St. Petersburg semifinalist prevailed 6-4 7-6(0).
Both Tauson and Kasatkina have clinched WTA titles this season. The 18-year-old Tauson had won her previous 13 matches in a row across Tour and ITF events, which included her maiden WTA title in Lyon. Kasatkina won the Phillip Island Trophy during the Australian swing.
After their first meeting, Kasatkina warned everyone about Tauson: “She’s a dangerous upcoming one!”
The former world No.10 Kasatkina also had time to paint.
Katerina Siniakova snapped her six-match main-draw losing streak with a 6-1 6-2 victory over Kirsten Flipkens in 63 minutes.
Flipkens was trying to win her first main-draw match in St. Petersburg on her fourth attempt.
Seventh seed Kristina Mladenovic was upset by wildcard Margarita Gasparyan 6-7(1) 6-1 6-1 in the night session. The world No.126 Gasparyan avenged her loss to Mladenovic that happened two weeks ago in Lyon.
The 27-year-old Mladenovic has won one singles title in her career and it was in St. Petersburg four years ago, while the following year the Frenchwoman returned to the final. Gasparyan triumphed in the Russian city two years ago, playing doubles with Ekaterina Makarova.
Fifth seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova ended the day with a straightforward 6-4 6-4 win over lucky loser Cagla Buyukakcay of Turkey.
Second round will begin on Wednesday. Stay with us for more WTA updates from St. Petersburg.