Defending champion Swiatek marches into second round

World No. 1 Poland's Iga Swiatek celebrates winning her first round match against Spain's Cristina BucsaReuters

World number one Iga Swiatek launched her French Open title defence on Tuesday by easing past Spain's Cristina Bucsa 6-4 6-0 to move into the second round.

The Pole, chasing a third French Open title in four years, got off to a sluggish start on a windy afternoon on Philippe-Chatrier court.

She had beaten the Spaniard in under an hour, losing just one game, at this year's Australian Open but Swiatek had a less than perfect run-up to Paris, retiring from her Italian Open quarter-final after suffering a thigh injury two weeks ago.

Poland's Iga Swiatek plays a backhand return to Spain's Cristina Bucsa during their women's singles match on day three of the Roland-Garros Open tennis tournament at the Court Philippe-Chatrier in Paris on 30 May, 2023

The 21-year-old triple Grand Slam winner was broken twice in her first three service games as a determined Bucsa, ranked 70th in the world, mixed it up and initially succeeded in throwing her opponent off balance.

But the top seed heeded that wake-up call towards the business end of the set and broke back to seal it.

The Pole, who began her 61st week at the top of the WTA rankings and is the favourite in Paris, snatched another break at the start of the second set with a thundering crosscourt forehand winner and never looked back.

She made amends for her first-set wobble with a bagel.