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ROLAND GARROS: Serena Williams bidding to equal Margaret Court’s record of 24 Grand Slam resumed at the French Open defeating fellow American Kristie Ann 7-6 (2) 6-0, on Monday.

American Williams playing her opponent had a sluggish condition as the Court Phillipe-Chatrier roof was opened just before the match. She struggled to win points, although she started with three aces to win opening game but Ann, ranked 102nd had better movement and chased down her opponent heavy ground strokes which by assessment she would have been given the set.

39 year-old Williams bounced back having been down 3-1 to Ann who was making her main draw debut at Roland Garros. She increased the temple, gaining points and forced a tie breaker as Ann served for the set at 5-4.

Williams who has won three of the Grand Slams at Roland Garros of her 23 Grand Slam singles titles raised the tie break, obviously with experience Ann was subdued in the second set.

Williams, said, “I just need to play with more confidence, like I’m Williams. So that was it. I just started playing like that, opening the court and moving and sliding. “I do think her level dropped a little bit in the beginning of the second set and took advantage of that.”

The second –round will see Williams against fellow mother Tsvetana Pironkova who beat Andrea Petkovic 6-3 6-3. Williams and Bulgarian, Pironkova met at the US Open at the quarter-final stage which Williams won in three sets.

“She’s playing well but I am too. I’m ready to play her. She’ll be ready to play me Williams said of Pironkova

Williams added “It will be a long match, she will get a lot of balls back but so will I. I will be ready”

Pironkova said of her opponent and the match ahead, “It’s always exciting to face her, especially after our last match”

“We played three sets. It was very exciting match, so we’ll see. I’m definitely very excited.”

Meanwhile Rafael Nadal comfortably secured his place in the second round at the Roland Garros beating Ego Gerasimov in straight sets 6-4 6-4 6-2. Although he had expressed concern about the cold conditions and slow balls in Paris in the lead to his favourite slam, however, he was happy he won.

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