Tunisia’s Ons Jabeur and South Africa’s Kevin Anderson booked their places in the second round of the U.S. Open, the year’s final Grand Slam in the tennis calendar.
Jabeur defeated Frenchwoman Alize Cornet in straight sets 7-5, 7-5 early on Tuesday in a tightly contested match which lasted one hour 44 minutes.
Despite being the underdog, the 56th ranked Cornet, pushed Jabeur with multiple breaks of serve which nearly resulted in both sets heading into tiebreakers.
Jabeur will next face Maria Camilla Osorio Serrano with a potential meeting against 15th seed Elise Mertens of Belgium in the third round and second seed Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus in the last 16.
Joining Jabeur in the second round is two-time Grand Slam finalist Anderson who survived a near upset to prevail against Czech Jiri Vesely on Monday.
Anderson came through 7-6, 4-6, 3-6, 7-6, 7-6 in more than four hours hitting 49 aces and 85 winners compared to Vesely’s 27 aces and 69 winners.
Though Anderson made fewer unforced errors and double faults than Vesely, he failed to convert any of his three break points while Vesely converted half of his (two out of four).
Anderson’s next opponent is 11th seed Diego Schwartzman of Argentina, who Anderson has defeated twice in their three previous meetings.
Another South African Lloyd Harris will be in action later on Tuesday when he takes on Russian Karen Khachanov.
Meanwhile, Egypt’s Mayar Sherif crashed out in the first round after losing Ukraine’s Anhelina Kalinina in three sets 6-4, 1-6, 1-6.
(Story compiled with assistance from wire reports)