Nate Chura is senior tennis pro at the Heights Casino in Brooklyn and covers the U.S. Open for WNYC.
American tennis sweetheart Melanie Oudin cruised through her opening round match with ease this afternoon at the National Tennis Center. Her opponent, Olga Savchuk of the Ukraine, managed to win a mere three games in the first match of the 2010 U.S. Open played on Arthur Ashe stadium. It took Oudin only 56 minutes to polish off the Ukrainian, 6-3, 6-0 (a.k.a…a bagel!)
Oudin out-classed her competition 20 winners to 3. Her last was a backhand up the line to butter the bagel.
How has Oudin matured since her coming-out party last year? The Georgia peach believes quite a bit. “I think I've grown up a lot,” said Oudin. “I mean, I think I'm actually more like a professional instead of just a junior. Even though now that I'm 18, I feel like I'm a legal adult now. So I guess that's a good thing.
“But, um, I'm just really excited that my match today went well. Definitely nervous like last night. And opening the tournament on Ashe was something that I definitely didn't expect, so it was a shock to me.”
The No. 6 seed, and this year’s French Open champ, Francesca Schiavone equally crushed Ayumi Morita of Japan in their opener, 6-1, 6-0. Schiavone could potentially meet Oudin in the 3rd round, but the Italian said she’s not looking that far ahead.
“Ah, you are flying too much,” said Schiavone. “I want to think about my next match. Oudin has a different way. To arrive there is long. Don't think that it's easy for the top seed to win a match.”
Schiavone has never been a player shy of expressing her emotions.
Other women to advance this afternoon included Kim Clijsters, Daniela Hantuchova, Shahar Peer, Elena Dementieva, and Alona Bondarenko.
Updated: 4:28 p.m.