Muguruza beats Barthel in straight sets at Thailand Open

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HUA HIN, Thailand — Garbine Muguruza rallied from a 4-0 deficit in the second set to beat Mona Barthel 6-3, 7-5 Wednesday in the second round of the Thailand Open.

The two-time Grand Slam champion said it was a “difficult match.”

“She had a lot of advantages but I’m happy that I kept fighting and ended up winning,” said Muguruza, who won the French Open in 2016 and Wimbledon a year later.

Muguruza will next face eighth-seeded Dayana Yastremska, who beat wild-card entry Peng Shuai 6-1, 6-4.

“In the first set, I felt really well on court but in the second set I felt a bit weak,” said Yastremska, an 18-year-old Ukrainian. “But I tried to keep myself under control and stayed focused like I did in the first set, which is the key for me to take the second set.”

Yastremska beat Muguruza last year in Luxembourg, winning 6-2, 6-3.

“She is young and has nothing to lose,” Muguruza said. “She is playing well right now. It will be a tough match.”

Also, fourth-seeded Saisai Zheng beat Irina-Camelia Begu 6-2, 6-4 and sixth-seeded Ajla Tomljanovic defeated Kateryn Kozlova 7-6 (0), 6-1.

Alcaraz loses to Goffin in 1st match as No. 1

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ASTANA, Kazakhstan — Carlos Alcaraz’s first match as the No. 1-ranked player ended with a straight-set loss to David Goffin at the Astana Open.

The 19-year-old Spaniard lost 7-5, 6-3 in his first tour match since winning the U.S. Open and capturing the No. 1 ranking.

“David was playing really, really well. To come back to competition is never easy,” Alcaraz said. “It’s really tough for me, for my confidence.”

Alcaraz came from 5-2 down to level the first set at 5-5, only to be broken again by his Belgian opponent.

“When you play against the World No. 1 on a big stage, big crowd, the fire inside gives you so much power to play your best tennis because you don’t have any choice,” Goffin said. “You have to fight and give your best and that was the case today.”

Second-seeded Daniil Medvedev and No. 3-seeded Stefanos Tsitsipas both avoided similar upsets. Medvedev beat Albert Ramos-Vinolas of Spain 6-3, 6-1 and Tsitsipas ousted Kazakhstan’s Mikhail Kukushkin 6-3. 6-4.

Kasatkina knocks out Raducanu at Agel Open

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OSTRAVA, Czech Republic — Fifth-seeded Daria Kasatkina defeated 2021 U.S. Open champion Emma Raducanu 7-5, 6-4 to advance to the second round of the Agel Open.

Kasatkina was playing her first match since losing in the first round of the U.S. Open and will next face Ekaterina Alexandrova.

Sixth-seeded Belinda Bencic of Switzerland rallied to eliminate former top-five player Eugenie Bouchard of Canada 6-7 (7), 6-1, while Aliaksandra Sasnovich upset eighth-seeded Jelena Ostapenko 6-2, 6-2.

American qualifiers Alycia Parks and Catherine McNally both advanced. Parks upset Czech Karolina Pliskova 6-0, 7-6 (3) and McNally eased past Anna Blinkova 6-1, 6-2 at the indoor hardcourt event in the Czech eastern city of Ostrava.