Young Americans, top-seeded favourites win through to main draw in Montreal
All four of the top four seeds were victorious on Day 2 of National Bank Open action in Montreal, with some cruising through to easy victories over their lower-ranked opponents and others battling past stern competition to earn their way into the main draw.
Alycia Parks, who survived a three-set thriller over Canadian wild card Marina Stakusic, was an easy 6-1, 6-2 victor over Spain’s Cristina Bucsa and became the first player to win her way into the main draw. Armed with one of the best first serves on tour and lethal power from the baseline, main draw direct entrants should be wary of Parks game as she rounds into the form that saw her win the title in Lyon earlier this season.
Top seed Lesia Tsurenko wasn’t far behind the American, dispatching Elizabeth Manlik 6-4, 6-2 and earning a spot in her fourth career National Bank Open main draw, having reached the quarter-finals back in 2015 as her best result.
Danielle Collins survived a massive challenge in the form of compatriot Emina Bektas, who at 30 years old is having a breakout season on the WTA Tour with a career-high ranking of No. 129 in the world. Collins, a former Top 10 talent who has struggled with injuries all season, battled hard to win the first set and held four match points in the second set tiebreak but was unable to close it out in the second.
Down by a break in the third, the fiery American – who outlasted Genie Bouchard in the first round of qualifying – managed to reel Bektas back in courtesy of some untimely double faults. After two hours and 26 minutes of play in front of an impressive Montreal crowd, the match was Collins’.
Rounding out the rest of main draw qualifiers was Katie Boulter, who defeated Marina Bassols Ribera 6-2, 6-2, Kimberly Birrell (d. Putintseva 6-2, 6-4), and Americans Peyton Stearns and Kayla Day, who advanced over Magdalena Frech and Sachia Vickery, respectively.