Two-time Madrid Open champion Simona Halep and new world No.2 Paula Badosa will face each other in the event’s second round after winning their openers on Thursday.
In a match-up between two 30-year-olds, Simona Halep converted all five of her break points to beat Zhang Shuai 6-2 6-3 under the roof on a rainy morning. This is the Romanian’s 11th appearance at the Madrid Open and she has reached the final a tournament-record four times.
Paula Badosa, who became the top seed after the withdrawal of Iga Swiatek, saved all five break points she faced in a 6-3 6-0 victory over Veronika Kudermetova. Last year, Badosa reached the semifinals at the Madrid Open as a wildcard ranked No.62, while now the Spaniard competes on a career-high ranking of No.2.
Defending champion Aryna Sabalenka is out of the tournament in the first round, having fallen to Amanda Anisimova 6-2 3-6 6-4. This was the American’s first main-draw match win in Madrid.