Stosur win ends run of poor results for Aussies

Daria Gavrilova smashes her racket on the court in her los to Elise Mertens of Belgium.
Daria Gavrilova smashes her racket on the court in her los to Elise Mertens of Belgium. TATYANA ZENKOVICH

A RELIEVED Samantha Stosur has ended Australia's dismal start to the French Open with a gritty first-round win over Kristina Kucova.

Sluggish early after a gruelling five-match run to the title in Strasbourg on Saturday, Stosur recovered from a service break down in the opening set to see off the Slovak 7-5 6-1 in one hour and 19 minutes.

The victory was the first for Australia's 11-strong singles contingent after first-up exits over the opening two days for Daria Gavrilova, Alja Tomljanovic, Jaimee Fourlis, Bernard Tomic, John Millman and Alex De Minaur.

Gavrilova was beaten by Belgian Elise Mertens 7-6 (4) 1-6 6-4.

"It wasn't, obviously, the easiest necessarily preparation going into a grand slam," Stosur said of her swift turnaround and one-day Paris build-up.

"But, on the other hand, winning a title and winning five matches in a row is awesome preparation.

"So I guess lucky that Strasbourg is pretty close and we all jumped on the same train together and got here as quickly as we could.

"But it was still definitely a very quick turnaround given the length and the toughness of the match I played against Dasha just on Saturday.

"But all in all, I'm really happy with the way I played today."

Stosur next faces Kirsten Flipkens - a 6-3 6-3 winner over Mandy Minella - for a place in the last 32, after advancing to the second round in Paris for the 11th consecutive year.

Topics:  daria gavrilova french open grand slam roland garros samantha stosur

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