Venus Williams was stunned by unseeded Wang Qiang on the first day of the French Open in a rematch of their first-round meeting last year.
The ninth-seeded Williams has struggled on clay this season and that continued in a 6-4, 7-5 loss on Sunday. For Wang, it’s just her second victory over a top-10 player in her career.
Williams had a whopping 35 unforced errors in the hard-fought match that lasted an hour and 40 minutes.
Williams, 37, reached the quarterfinals and semifinals at the Miami and Indian Wells events earlier this season, but won just one match in clay-court events in Madrid and Rome heading into Roland Garros.
Williams has long struggled at the French Open, though she was a runner-up in 2002 and reached the quarterfinals on four other occasions, though she hasn’t made it far since 2006.
Wang, 26, gave Williams a tough challenge in last year’s opener, falling 6-4, 7-6 (3) in their opening-round match. Williams made it to the fourth round in 2017.
While her singles run is over, Venus and Serena Williams are still slotted to compete in doubles as a wild-card entrant.
Serena Williams, unseeded since watching her ranking plummet after taking time off for her pregnancy, is slated to open singles play on Monday.
–Field Level Media