American Serena Williams is through to the third round of the Rogers Cup in Toronto after beating Elise Mertens.
The fan favourite looked back to her best on Thursday as he secured a 6-3 6-3 victory. Williams was back in action for the first time since losing in the Wimbledon final and she is using the event as a warm-up for the US Open, which starts on August 26.
She started slowly but soon reeled off five games to win the opening set before then taking control in the second. Mertens made eight double faults in the match and Williams was delighted with her display. “I’m loving going out there,” the three-time winner Williams said. “I feel like my movement is great,” said Williams.
“I’ve been working on my fitness, so I felt like it really was able to shine through.” Williams will now take on Russia’s Ekaterina Alexandrova in the next round, while Japan’s Naomi Osaka is also through after Tatjana Maria retired.
Defending champion and fourth seed Simona Halep beat American Jennifer Brady 4-6 7-5 7-6 (7-5) while sixth seed Elina battled past Katerina Siniakova thanks to a 6-3 3-6 6-3 scoreline.