U.S. Open: Melanie Oudin back at home
Melanie Oudin, the 18-year-old who delighted the tennis world last year by upsetting four higher-ranked players and making it to the U.S. Open quarterfinals, has a match record of 18-24 since that eye-opening adventure and has lost in the first round of two of this year's three major tournaments so far. But Monday, in the day's opening match of the 2010 U.S. Open at Arthur Ashe Stadium in New York, Oudin rediscovered her best fist-pumping, aggressive tennis.
Oudin -- with the word "courage" penned on the sides of her tennis shoes (last year, it was "believe") -- beat qualifier Olga Savchuk of Ukraine 6-3, 6-0.
The other players who also took little time in advancing to the second round were 12th-seeded Elena Dementieva, of Russia, and sixth-seeded and defending French Open champion Francesca Schiavone. Dementieva, standing out in her bright red tennis dress, beat Olga Govortsova 6-1, 6-2. Schiavone, of Italy, displayed all her off-speed talent. She used spin and drop shots and lightly hit backhands to beat Ayumi Morita of Japan 6-1, 6-0.
-- Diane Pucin, reporting from New York
Photo: Melanie Oudin overpowered Ukrainian Olga Savchuk 6-3, 6-0. Credit: Kevin Lamarque / Reuters