2013 Wimbledon finalist, Sabine Lisicki was up against fourth seed Kristina Mladenovic in the first round at the Mallorca Open. Lisicki looking to find her form on her favorite grass while Mladenovic was looking to reduce the winning record the German holds against her.
It was Lisicki who was looking sharp from the start, needing just one break of serve to take the first set. The German was constantly pressurizing the Mladenovic serve and reaped the reward with another solitary break to close out a comfortable 6-4, 6-4 victory.
Lisicki solid on serve and finds the crucial break
Both players held their games to start the match. Lisicki was first to attack, sending a forehand down the line winner in the third game to create a couple of break point. Mladenovic saved both with some good serves and kept the match on serve.
Serving at 3-2, a string of errors from the fourth seed presented the German with yet a few more chances to break. Mladenovic saved one with a smart drop shot but a double fault then gifted the game to Lisicki. And the German consolidated the break with ease to go 4-2 up. Lisicki was barely troubled on her service games and that one break was sufficient as she went on to close out the first set 6-4.
Mladenovic undone by her own errors as Lisicki wraps up victory
Mladenovic got off to a good start with a service hold in the second set. The Frenchwoman was in trouble again however as she was unable to handle Lisicki’s return and as a result faced a break point in the third game. Mladenovic won the subsequent rally with a forehand winner to rescue the break point and dug out an important hold for3-2. The German meanwhile continued her dominance on serve and the Frenchwoman was finding it hard to make any headway.
Mladenovic serve was unraveling as she hit her eighth double fault handing Lisicki double break point in the seventh game. She saved one but was fell short due to her own undoing failing to put the away and the German went up 4-3. Her struggles continued and under pressure from Lisicki, Mladenovic handed match point to the German. She managed to save it but was constantly pegged back to deuce and landed her shot wide after the fifth deuce to give Lisicki her second match point. The Frenchwoman fended off the German once more before closing out the game to force Lisicki to serve for the match.
And finally, Mladenovic got her first break point chance as Lisicki was serving for the match. Even though the German rescued it, a failed drop shot attempt handed another opening for the Frenchwoman. Again Lisicki hung on and then dished out some match points. And eventually on the third match point on her own serve, the German sealed the victory.