Top seed Iga Swiatek will take on World No. 35 Bernarda Pera in the third round of the 2023 Madrid Open on Sunday.
After a first-round bye, Swiatek kicked off her quest for a maiden title in Madrid against lucky loser Julia Grabher. She secured an early break of serve to go 4-1 up in the opening set. The Pole defended the lead quite easily and soon went on to clinch the set.Swiatek then broke her opponent’s serve twice to lead 3-0 in the second set.
Grabher bagged the next couple of games to make it 3-2. But the World No. 1 nipped the Austrian’s comeback in the bud as she claimed the next three games to win the match 6-3, 6-2.
Pera, meanwhile, was up against 2022 Wimbledon semifinalist Tatjana Maria in the second round. The first set was quite one-sided as the American dropped just one game en route to winning it.
The second set was slightly more competitive. Both players defended their serve quite well for the most part. Pera nabbed the decisive break in the eighth game to go 5-3 up. She then served out the match with ease to win 6-1, 6-3.
This will be the first main-draw meeting between them, so the head-to-head stands at 0-0 for now. They did face off in a qualifying round once before, with Swiatek winning that encounter in three sets back in 2019.