Second seed Jelena Jankovic fought past Ana Konjuh in straight sets to reach the second round of the new Mallorca Open tournament.
Konjuh jumps out to immediate lead, Jankovic leaves it late to take first set
Konjuh has weapons that are suited for grass and she showed why in the first two games, breaking Jankovic quickly while hanging on to her own serve in the next game, Jankovic getting to deuce twice, but no further. The set featured relatively little drama afterwards as the server dictated the games until Konjuh served for it at 5-4. She held a set point and when Jankovic saved that, it started a run of 11 straight points to close out the first set 7-5 in 44 minutes.
Janković continues run to start second set, puts Konjuh away
Konjuh's capitulation to end the first set threw away any momentum she may have gathered from her good play to start. Sensing she was now on the front foot, Janković's domination continued, winning 12 of the first 17 points to open up the second set and assume a 3-0 lead. The Serb had mow won 23 of the last 28 points to rattle off six straight games, Konjuh helpless to turn things around. If the match wasn't already over, a second break by Janković seemed to confirm this notion, the Serb now running away with the set 5-1.
Presented with the opportunity to close out the match, Janković surprisingly slipped, Konjuh breaking for the first time since the opening game of the match. Serving to stay in the match, the Croat held, but still faced an uphill climb as Janković still led by a break at 5-3. Any momentum built up by Konjuh in the previous two games was thwarted as Janković served out the match to 15, winning the second set 6-3 in 31 minutes to advance to the second round.
The strength of the Serb's game is her movement, court awareness and return of serve and she was efficient in taking her break chances, converting all four of her opportunities. While she only won 6 of 26 first serve return points, she was able to capture 22 of 35 second serve return points. She also held on to her own serve well, only broken twice while winning 68% of her service points (38 of 58). Conversely, Konjuh won just 20 of 58 return points, highlighting her need for consistency in the future.
In-form qualifier next
Janković will next face qualifier Elise Mertens in the second round. Mertens is coming off of her first WTA Tour-level quarterfinal last week in s-Hertogenbosch, which Included a thrashing of Eugenie Bouchard. Janković and Mertens have never played before.