With play on all the outdoor courts delayed because of rain on Wednesday, the US Open action continued inside under the roofs of Arthur Ashe and Louis Armstrong Stadiums. Two former finalists, seventh-seed Kei Nishikori on the men’s side and third-seed Karolina Pliskova on the women’s side, were the first to advance to the tournament’s third-round.
Inside Ashe, Pliskova dispatched Georgian qualifier Mariam Bolkvadze 6-1, 6-4 in just one hour and six minutes. Pliskova, who reached the finals here in 2016, blasted 19 winners and had her serve broken just once to push her way into the third round.
“Of course, lucky that I could play there, because now everybody is going to maybe start at 4:00 p.m. That’s perfect,” Pliskova said of being able to play indoors. “I was also able to warm up on the center court under the roof which kind of helped because I felt it was quite different compared to playing outdoors. I played a couple of times already with the roof and on center court, so I thought it’s quite noisy still...That’s how it is. You have some time to get used to it. I was there maybe about an hour, I thought I did well.”
Up next for the Czech is the winner of Ons Jabeur of Tunisia and Belarusian Aliaksandra Sasnovich.
Nishikori battled against Bradley Klahn in the day’s first match in Armstrong, holding off a late surge from the American to win 6-2, 4-6, 6-3, 7-5. A finalist in 2015, Nishikori didn’t play his cleanest match, hitting 32 unforced errors and being broken four times, but he did set up 20 break points on Klahn’s serve, converting on eight of them to push through.
In the third round, Nishikori will meet either 31st seed Cristian Garin of Chile or Australian Alex de Minaur.
Grigor Dimitrov advanced to the third round by default, as the 12th-seeded Croat Borna Coric withdrew with a back injury.
Brian Coleman is the Senior Editor for New York Tennis Magazine. He may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org