Former champion Maria Sharapova is through to the second round of the US Open at Flushing Meadow, after beating Britain’s Heather Watson.
However the Russian didn’t have it all her own way, losing the first set to the 19 year old Watson, who went into the match ranked 100 places behind. Sharapova eventually fought back to win the match 3-6 7-5 6-3, but it took her two and a half hours to do it.
Asked afterwards about the match, Watson said :"I learned what I'm capable of. I had a lot of fun today. It's what I want to do. I want to be out there on the big courts playing the top players.
"It was a really great match, very competitive. We played some really great tennis. I had my chances in the second set.
"You have to create the opportunity but also execute, and I was probably a bit too defensive on those important points. But I always believed I could win. There's no point in my going out there if I don't believe that I can win."
The 2009 junior champion was playing in the US Open main draw for the first time. Sharapova, seeded third, was widely seen as the second favourite for the tournament behind Serena Williams, but the erratic serving that has caused her trouble already this season was still in evidence.
"It was one of the toughest (opening matches) that I've had," said Sharapova. "Obviously not really knowing too much about my opponent and not facing her before, she just came out and played really smart.
"There's no doubt that I wasn't playing my best tennis. She was smart in making me hit another ball. I was making so many errors out there. She stuck to her game plan. She kept grinding."
Meanwhile, Petra Kvitova became the first reigning Wimbledon champion to lose in the first round of the US Open as she lost to Romania's Alexandra Dulgheru.
The Czech fifth seed has only won two matches since beating Sharapova to win her first grand slam title in July, and Kvitova admitted that the pressure of being a grand slam champion had affected her.
"It's something new for me. Everything is in the head” she said, “If you are thinking on court negatively, it's bad."
Venus Williams began her campaign with a comfortable 6-4, 6-3 victory over Russia's Vesna Dolonts and Watson’s fellow Briton Laura Robson also made it through to round two, after Japanese Ayumi Morita retired with a shoulder injury.
Connect with Sportsvibe by joining our social media network. Join the debate to get your voice heard and stay informed with up-to-the-minute news, videos, competitions and articles from the world of sport.