Pliskova 6-7, 4-5 Williams* (*denotes next server)
Williams looks poised for victory just two points from the win at 0-30, but Pliskova steels herself and reels off four points in a row to dig out the hold.
Serena will serve for a place in the second round.
Pliskova* 6-7, 3-5 Williams (*denotes next server)
Has normal service been resumed? It looks that way as Serena bangs down a 13th ace on her way to a blessedly straightforward love hold.
Pliskova 6-7, 3-4 Williams* (*denotes next server) – Williams breaks
Pliskova’s 13th and 14th aces of the match take her to 40-0, but three superb returns from Serena have us back at deuce. Pliskova then makes a horrible mess of a forehand to fall down break point, before another missed forehand hands over the break to Williams.
This is a strange, undulating match. The quality has dipped in the last few games.
Pliskova* 6-7, 3-3 Williams (*denotes next server) - Pliskova breaks back
Much better serving – including an 11th ace – helps Serena to 40-15, but Pliskova nails a couple of returns to level things up at deuce. Williams then can’t quite retrieve a Pliskova lob and she’s down break point again. This time, Pliskova takes it as Serena nets a forehand.
Williams is furious at herself for wasting those two points to take a 4-2 lead.
Pliskova 6-7, 2-3 Williams* (*denotes next server) - Williams breaks
Oh dear, Pliskova puts a dreadful forehand long followed by a dismal double fault to find herself down a break point at 30-40. She then nets a backhand to gift Serena the break.
Williams three service holds from the second round.
Pliskova* 6-7, 2-2 Williams (*denotes next server)
Pliskova is getting a good look on the Williams serve, and she thwacks away consecutive forehand return winners to earn herself a break point up advantage. Serena saves it with a strong serve down the T, and two unreturned serves follow to eke out the hold.
Pliskova 6-7, 2-1 Williams* (*denotes next server) - Williams breaks back
After we finally had a break in the previous game, are we about to see another one straight away? Yes we are. Serena earns herself two break points at 15-40 with a forehand pass on the stretch, before a Pliskova double fault seals the deal.
We’re back on serve in the second set.
Pliskova* 6-7, 2-0 Williams (*denotes next server) - Pliskova breaks
At last, Pliskova has her first break point of the match as Serena double faults at deuce. How does the American respond? With an ace out wide, of course. But Williams then double faults when up advantage, and Pliskova nails an inside out forehand winner to earn a second break point. You know what happens next – Serena bangs down another ace. After a couple more deuces, Pliskova earns herself a third break point with another forehand winner. Can she take this one? Yes she can! Williams nets a forehand, and after 66 minutes we have the first break of the match.
That was a poor game from Williams, including two double faults. Her energy and intensity has just dropped a touch at the start of this set.
Pliskova 6-7, 1-0 Williams* (*denotes next server)
No let-down from Pliskova after tensing up at the end of the first set. She holds to love here, sealed with a neat backhand winner.
Pliskova* 6-7 Williams (*denotes next server) – Serena wins the tie-break 7-4!
Pliskova sends a forehand wide and that is the first set for Serena!
First set tie-break: Pliskova* 4-6 Williams
Pliskova saves the first one with a strong serve out wide.
First set tie-break: Pliskova* 3-6 Williams
Make that six points in a row as Serena thumps a forehand away to bring up three set points.
First set tie-break: Pliskova 3-5 Williams*
Pliskova nets a backhand to gift Serena her fifth point in a row.
First set tie-break: Pliskova 3-4 Williams*
A superb backhand winner puts Serena a mini-break up and suddenly in control of the breaker.
First set tie-break: Pliskova* 3-3 Williams
A brilliant Serena backhand return gets the mini-break back. We’re level at the change of ends.
First set tie-break: Pliskova* 3-2 Williams
A weak Pliskova forehand into the net keeps it to one mini-break.
First set tie-break: Pliskova 3-0 Williams*
Williams can’t retrieve a Pliskova forehand, and she’s up against it here.
First set tie-break: Pliskova* 2-0 Williams
Pliskova swats away a forehand winner to double her lead.
First set tie-break: Pliskova* 1-0 Williams
Pliskova flicks a forehand return winner away to grab the instant mini-break.
Pliskova 6-6 Williams* (*denotes next server) – Tie-break time
Serena again gets a glimmer of a break at 30-30 as Pliskova nets a pretty regulation backhand. A very shaky forehand follows, and Serena is up set point at 30-40! Can she take it? No! Pliskova slams an ace down the T. A couple of strong serves follow to secure the hold for the Czech.
We’re into a tie-break.
Pliskova* 5-6 Williams (*denotes next server)
Back-to-back Williams aces secure her first love hold of the match. The three-time champion is starting to settle into this.
Pliskova will serve to stay in the first set for a second time.
Pliskova 5-5 Williams* (*denotes next server)
Opportunity knocks for Serena as Pliskova sends a backhand wide for 30-30. Williams then thinks she’s earned herself a set point, but a crosscourt backhand lands just wide. She’s then wayward with a forehand return, and Pliskova clings on.
Pliskova* 4-5 Williams (*denotes next server)
Really good defence from Serena in the final point of the game to wrap up a hold to 30. Encouraging to see her moving that well.
Still no breaks – or even break points – for either player. Pliskova will serve to stay in the first set.
Pliskova 4-4 Williams* (*denotes next server)
A love hold from Pliskova, who is serving beautifully today. Williams struggling for rhythm on her returns thus far.
Pliskova* 3-4 Williams (*denotes next server)
That’s more like it from Serena. She absolutely leathers a couple of forehand winners to claim a breezy hold to 15.
How is Williams not overheating in her outfit on what is now a really sunny afternoon?!
Pliskova 3-3 Williams* (*denotes next server)
Pliskova possesses one of the finest serves on the WTA Tour – a skidding, leftie delivery – and she holds comfortably to 15 here. Both players just easing there way into this one.
Pliskova* 2-3 Williams (*denotes next server)
Hi everyone, Charlie Eccleshare here. I’ve just jumped over from Kyle Edmund’s very impressive straight-sets win over Alex De Minaur.
Anyway, to the here and now where it’s another hold for Serena – this time to 30 – to keep the American’s nose in front. Naturally all the noise on social media has been about Serena’s eye-catching black cat-suit.
Pliskova 2-2 Williams* (*denotes next server)
Quite the task for Serena Williams, her first slam match in more than a year on her least favourite surface. Pliskova steps into a forehand winner and follows that up with an ace to seal the game.
Pliskova* 1-2 Williams (*denotes next server)
A comfortable second service game for Williams, including two aces, as she moves through the gears.
Pliskova 1-1 Williams* (*denotes next server)
Both players still finding their range in the second game. Pliskova produces an ace to move 30-15 ahead before a strong second serve – right up against the line – proves too much to Williams.
Pliskova* 0-1 Williams (*denotes next server)
John McEnroe points out Pliskova has never won a match at the French Open before, so perhaps a good draw for Williams. We’ll soon see.
Williams double faults at 15-15 but rifles an ace past her opponent at 30-all and closes out the game to start well.
Here comes Serena
Serena Williams vs Kristyna Pliskova will be starting soon. Both players are out on court.
The comeback continues
It’s a big day at the French Open as Serena Williams makes her comeback on Day 3 of the clay-court Grand Slam following the birth of her daughter in September.
Williams hasn’t played in a major since winning her 23rd Grand Slam title at the 2017 Australian Open and a big question mark is hanging over her current form. A three-time champion at Roland Garros, she has not played a single competitive match on clay this season ahead of her first round meeting with Kristyna Pliskova of the Czech Republic
Also in the women’s first round, 2016 winner Garbine Muguruza plays another former French Open champion, Russia’s Svetlana Kuznetsova, who won in 2009. And No. 1 seed Simona Halep starts her French Open campaign against 83rd-ranked Alison Riske of the United States.
Play has been interrupted at on Tuesday morning because of rain.
Third-seeded Marin Cilic and James Duckworth played for a little more than one hour on Court Philippe Chatrier before they were sent back to the locker room by tournament officials.
Cilic, a runner-up at the Australian Open earlier this year, led 6-3, 5-4 when their first-round match was stopped.
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