Paula Badosa needed just 70 minutes on Friday to dispatch fourth-seeded Ons Jabeur 6-1, 6-4 in the second round of the Internazionali BNL d’Italia in Rome.
The Spaniard Badosa converted 5 of 9 break-point opportunities while improving to 4-1 all-time against Jabeur of Tunisia.
Badosa won the first five games of the match while cruising through the first set. She trailed 3-1 in the second set before winning five of the final six games to close the match.
“I’m really happy, to be honest,” Badosa said afterward. “I think I started very, very well the first set. The second said she played a little bit better. I stayed in the tough moments. I played quite well and I’m really happy about the level.”
The match was Jabeur’s first since April 22 due to a calf injury.
Badosa will next face No. 32 seed Marta Kostyuk of Ukraine. Kostyuk cruised to a 6-0, 6-4 victory over Claire Liu.
“She’s playing very well, but it doesn’t surprise me,” Badosa said of Kostyuk. “I always said that she has an amazing potential and for sure at some point of her career she’s going to be in the very top. I really like her style of game. I think we play quite similar. So I expect the battle there.”
Top-seed Iga Switaek played for the first time this week and rolled to a 6-0, 6-0 victory over Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia.
Swiatek had 19 winners against nine unforced errors while prevailing in 67 minutes. The two-time defending champion has won 12 straight matches on the clay in Rome.
Swiatek wasn’t caught up in the dominating score.
“In my opinion, the score doesn’t really matter and it doesn’t have any influence on my feeling on the court,” Swiatek said. “I’m just trying to play my best tennis no matter what the score is.”
Swiatek next faces Ukraine’s Lesia Tsurenko, who posted a 6-4, 6-4 victory over 28th-seeded American Bernarda Pera.
No. 7 seed Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan posted a 7-6 (4), 6-1 win over Italy’s Jasmine Paolini, while No. 8 Daria Kasatkina of Russia rolled to a 6-1, 6-2 victory over Italian Lisa Pigato.
Ninth-seeded Greek Maria Sakkari recorded a 6-1, 6-3 victory over Barbora Strycova of the Czech Republic, and No. 10 Barbora Krejcikova, another Czech, knocked off Montenegro’s Danka Kovinic 6-2, 4-1 after the latter retired due to exhaustion.
Among other upsets, popular Italian Camila Giorgi defeated No. 15 seed Russian Ekaterina Alexandrova 6-4, 6-2, and Karolina Muchova of the Czech Republic beat 18th-seeded Italian Martina Trevisan 3-6, 6-3, 7-5.
Also, Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic trounced 24th-seeded Canadian Bianca Andreescu 6-0, 6-1; Russia’s Anna Kalinskaya stunned No. 25 Elise Mertens of Belgium 6-4, 4-6, 6-3, and Austria’s Julia Grabher scored a 7-6 (4), 5-7, 6-3 victory over No. 26 Jil Teichmann of Switzerland.
Other winners included No. 16 Liudmila Samsonova of Russia, No. 20 Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia and No. 21 Donna Vekic of Croatia.
–Field Level Media