LONDON (Reuters) – French Open champion Garbine Muguruza had to work hard to transfer her punch on Paris clay to Wimbledon’s grass on Monday, beating Camila Giorgi 6-2 5-7 6-4 with a performance of powerful baseline tennis.
In a match coinciding with the Spain v Italy clash at Euro 2016 in France, the Spanish world number two and her battling Italian opponent, ranked 65 places below, entertained the Centre Court with intense rallies of relentless ferocity.
It was the confidence and enormous serve of last year’s runner-up Muguruza that got the better of Giorgi — but not before the 24-year-old Italian had overcome bouts of inconsistency to force a forehand error and grab the second set.
The Spaniard, 22, finally put her foot down in the 10-minute third game of the third set, forcing six break points before finally wrestling the game from the underdog.
A big serve that Giorgi could only put wide won Muguruza the match and a clash with Slovak qualifier Jana Cepelova in the second round.
(Reporting by Clare Lovell)