APRIL 22 - MAY 5, 2024

Bertens starts her title defence

Kiki Bertens has progressed to the 2nd round of the 2021 Mutua Madrid Open. In the defending champion’s opener in the Manolo Santana Stadium, the match that started the day in the Madrid WTA 1000’s final draw, the Dutch player faced the Andorran Victoria Jiménez Kasintseva, who was playing on a wildcard. In what was the first clash between the event’s seventh seed and the young 15-year-old player, Kiki Bertens won 6-4, 6-0 in 1 hour and 4 minutes of play.

Although the first set fell to the Dutch player, Jimenez Kasintseva showed why she was worthy of an invitation to the 19th edition of the Madrid tournament. The Andorran, champion of the Under-16 Mutua Madrid Open in 2019 and the Junior Australian Open last year, broke Berten’s serve twice. However, with the 15-year-old serving to make it 5-5, the No. 10 in the WTA ranking converted her status as favourite to break back and take the first set in 41 minutes.

In the second set, Bertens put her foot to the floor and cruised to her first win in the tournament without giving her opponent a look in. The Dutch player, the champion in 2019 and runner-up in 2018, produced a resounding 6-0 in 19 minutes. Although Jiménez Kasintseva was unable to win a game in the second set, the experience of playing on the Caja Mágica’s centre court against the tournament’s seventh seed will have given the young Andorran valuable experience for her budding professional career.

The last champion of the Mutua Madrid Open did not falter in her opener on the Madrid clay, sealing her place in the next round and demonstrating her intentions to lift Madrid’s WTA 1000 title once again. In the 2nd round, Bertens will face the winner of the tie between Russian players Veronika Kudermetova and Elena Vesnina, which takes place this afternoon on the Caja Mágica’s Court 4.