The opening day of WTA 1000 tournament in Montreal was strongly interrupted by rain condiions, which naggled the players and fans for almost whole day. The frequent and long delays forced organizers to reschedule the plans for first two days of tournament, but 10 matches has been successfully completed at the end of Monday.
Brady performs a miracle win
The match between Jennifer Brady and Jelena Ostapenko was a highlight of the opening day with quite a surprising outcome in the result of Brady's three-sets victory. The course of events during the game and post-match stats make this upset even more unique from the perspective of both players. Ostapenko was a pre-match favorite, but the odds did not write-off Brady, as she was rated by 2.57 for the win.
This match was a festive of wasting chances from the Latvian, who was on the front foot in every set from the start. The world's number 20 was leading by 3-1 in opening set and created 4 breakpoints in two following service games of her opponent since then, but did not extend the lead, as Brady held both the games and managed to level the score a while later. The set was settled in long and intense tiebreak, where Ostapenko was the first to have two setpoints during the score 6-4. Brady turned this set over by winning 5 out of 6 points since then and clinched it surprisingly despite how the play looked like from the start. The pre-match favorite could especially regret the super-easy volley missed within a score 7-7, which could be the decisive point of this set.
Ostapenko regrouped herself in second set and quickly forced a decider by winning 6-0, not giving her opponent too many chances to take up the fight there. The Latvian has extended her dominance to 9 games won in a row, moving up into 3-0 lead in third set. Ostapenko could make it even 10 in a row, as she had two breakpoints in 4th game. Converting any of them could drastically restrict the options of Brady's comeback to this match, but the American performed a crucial hold to stay alive in this match. Despite facing another 3 breakpoints in the following service game, Brady was still in play, keeping herself in a distance of one break gap. The 2021 Australian Open runner-up capitalized on her resillience and created her first chance in this set by converting the breakpoint in 7th game, which took her back level on serve. Both the players held their serves until the tiebreak, which was an epic and tight battle for the win till the end. Both the players had two matchpoints on each side, but it's again Ostapenko who had the serious chance as a first one, serving while being 8-7 up. Brady won both the service points of her opponent and finally closed this match with a score 7-6(7) 0-6 7-6(8).
It's a really unique victory scored by the American, looking on the stats. Ostapenko created 10 more breakpoints (16-6) and gained 3 more breaks (5-2) throughout whole the match. The Latvian has also won 15 single points more (126-111). Another thing is that winning the match despite losing any set by 0-6 and suffering the series of 9 games lost in a row is really something special. Brady took just everything from this match, being super effective and resillient while hanging by a thread in all sets. Ostapenko was leading with a break and had direct point chances to close every set. Coming back from being *0-3 15-40 in deciding set is also an achievement by itself. This day was even more remarkable for Brady, as she performed such a victory while playing against the same opponent after almost exactly 2 years from her last match before the long break, which took her out from competition. Another stop in Montreal will be not less demanding, as Elena Rybakina will be Jennifer Brady's opponent in second round.
Venus Williams never gives up
Once the rain gone away for the evening session, the spotlights were focused on the all-American battle between Madison Keys and Venus Williams. The 15th seed was an obvious favorite related to odds and did her job done well by winning in straight sets. The 7 times Grand Slam champion did show up well despite lose, especially considering her performance in second set. Keys won the opener by 6-2, not facing any single breakpoint from her legendary fellowcountry. The world's number 15 had set up herself in a driver's seat to a comfortable win after gaining a break in 7th game of second set and was serving for the match in 10th game later on. Despite being 40-15 up on serve and having 7 matchpoints in this game, Keys did not close the match, as Williams did not give up till the end and came back to this match by gaining her first break of the evening. It was not enough to stay in contention though, as Keys regained her advantage in the following game and secured the victory later on, winning by 6-2 7-5 after converting 9th matchpoint in general. Jasmine Paolini will be the next opponent of Keys. The Italian performed the biggest upset of a day on paper, defeating Donna Vekic by 7-6(3) 6-2, while Paolini was rated with an odd 3.02 ahead of the match against Croatian.
Career's peak for Boulter
The match between Katie Boulter and the Canadian wild-card receiver Rebecca Marino concluded the play on central court for Monday. The Brit has comfortably won by 6-3 6-1, without losing any single service game this evening. It's third win in Montreal for Boulter, who needed to climb up from the qualies field and won all her matches in straight sets so far. After super successful campaign on grass and becoming the highest classified Brit in WTA list, Boulter continues the the ranking increase, achieving the 58th place in live rankings at the end of Monday. The chances to stay in top 60 at the end of week are pretty high, while the new career's peak for Boulter is guaranteed right now. The player from UK sets up an interesting match-up against Cori Gauff in second round. The American comes to action in Montreal just after winning her first career's WTA 500 title in Washington last weekend.