Live Updates; Video Highlights: Women's UTR Pro Match Series, May 22

Live Updates; Video Highlights: Women's UTR Pro Match Series, May 22

Amanda Anisimova, Alison Riske, Ajla Tomljanovic and Danielle Collins are competing in a professional event for the first time since March.

Stay tuned to this page throughout the day for live updates on the matches, along with on-demand replays, video highlights and photography from West Palm Beach.


FULL MATCH REPLAYS

Danielle Collins d. Amanda Anisimova, 4-1, 4-2


Ajla Tomljanovic d. Alison Riske, 4-3 (4), 4-1


Alison Riske d. Amanda Anisimova, 0-4, 4-0, 4-3 (6):


DAY 1 RECAP

4:05 p.m. ET: Of course the first game of the third set reached 40-40. On the deciding (no-ad) point, Amanda Anisimova put a forehand into the net, giving Alison Riske a 1-0 lead. Would Riske run out the set, 4-0, as each player did once already?

It sure seemed that way. Facing break point and already down 2-0, Anisimova slapped her racquet onto the court, along with the box holding her towel. With no other shot working since her torrid start, she tried a dropper, which Riske tracked down. Anisimova couldn't return it, and Riske had now won her seventh consecutive game.

"With her stature, she should be able to get first serves in harder," said Lindsay Davenport, who acknowledged Anisimova's obvious potential while pointing out what needs to improve.


Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Everything needed to improve—quickly—if Anisimova hoped to avoid an ignominious 0-4, 4-0, 4-0 defeat. That's what happened, with Anisimova finding her targets with running forehands and the confident groundstrokes she's already become known for.

Riske, for her part, twice failed to serve out the match, despite earning a match point at 3-2. But as a deciding point, it was also a break point for Anisimova. Once again, Anisimova saved some of her best for last, outlasting Riske to force a final tiebreaker.

Further momentum changes ensued, and after exchanges of mini breaks, Anisimova—after all the turbulence—earned two match points. But Davenport's earlier comments about Anisimova's serve sounded again, when the teen then failed to serve out the match.

After saving two match points, Riske converted her second match point to complete a wild round-robin match, 0-4, 4-0, 4-3 (6). Riske improved to 1-1; Anisimova fell to 0-2.

MATCH POINT:


Considering the extended layoff, condensed scoring format and unique playing conditions, it's hard to tell exactly what we got out of this contest from a tennis perspective. But from a viewing perspective, tennis fans got something they haven't seen since March: drama.


3:24 p.m. ET: Fast4? More like Fast4-0. In just 15 minutes, Alison Riske did to Amanda Anisimova as Ansimova did to her. The Americans will head to a deciding third set—and if the first two sets are any indication, the first game is a must-win.


Michael Reaves/Getty Images


3:09 p.m. ET: "Anisimova looks like a different player," said Lindsay Davenport on Tennis Channel's coverage of the UTR Pro Match Series. Yes, the 18-year-old was wearing a different outfit than she did in her first match, a straightforward defeat to Danielle Collins. But the former No. 1 was referring to Anisimova's vastly improved play. She won the first 10 points of the match, and took the set 4-0. Was she the beneficiary of a few net cords? Yes. But you often need to be lucky and good to win a bagel set, even in a Fast4 format. It was a lethal combination, and a challenge far too great for Riske to overcome.


2:28 p.m. ET: In a Fast4 format, every point means more—fewer games are needed to win a set. But in a tiebreaker—held at 6-6 in a standard set, and at 3-3 in a Fast4 set—every point is worth the same as it always has.

Alison Riske and Ajla Tomljanovic found themselves in a tiebreaker after the day's most competitive set, by far. If it was a familiar situation for the players, it was still a tense juncture, with any mistake magnified.

The biggest mistake came at 4-5, when Riske struck a double fault, Tomljanovic had her opening, and she took it a point later, when Riske couldn't handle her return and put a backhand into the net.


Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Riske had a chance to take a 3-1 lead in that opening set, but was unable to consolidate an early break. Tomljanovic one-upped her opponent again in the second set, breaking Riske for a 2-1 lead and then holding at love.

The Australian's impressive form flummoxed Riske in the later stages; Tomljanovic struck a clean return winner in the match's final game. Yes, Riske was broken again, though not before saving two match points. On the third, Tomljanovic let Riske do herself in with an unforced error.

MATCH POINT:


"I think we both [didn't] look how was usually do," said Tomljanovic, a 4-3 (4), 4-1 victor. "I think I've managed in the last couple of weeks to find a reason to come out every day.

"We break each other's serves a lot, because we return really well. I think a couple of times I went for it, and it paid off."

POST-MATCH INTERVIEW:


1:06 p.m. ET: In related news, it was announced that a 16-player team event in Charleston, S.C.—The Credit One Bank Invitational—will begin on June 23. Madison Keys and Bethanie Mattek-Sands will be team captains, with US Open champion Bianca Andreescu and Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin part of the field.

You can read more about the announcement here.


1:02 p.m. ET: As she did in the first set, Danielle Collins took a 3-0 lead over Amanda Anisimova in the second. Her serve continued to cause the talented teen trouble on a windy day; even when Anisimova got into a rally, she wasn't striking the ball with her typically clean strokes.

While Anisimova dug her way back in with a break of serve, Collins earned four match points at 40-0—remember, it's no-ad scoring—to complete a routine 4-1, 4-2 victory.

MATCH POINT:


"I think all of us are ready to be competing again," said Collins, who acknowledged that she especially missed the fan aspect of the sport. "I haven't played matches for a while, and neither has Amanda, so it took a little bit of time to settle in."

POST-MATCH INTERVIEW:


12:42 p.m. ET: As Danielle Collins entered the facility, her temperature was checked...

Michael Reaves/Getty Images

...and to ensure that social-distance guidelines were adhered to, she was directed where to go by a masked and gloved official.

Michael Reaves/Getty Images

Once she took to the court, she took it to Amanda Anisimova, winning the first three games of the match before taking the first set, 4-1.


12:00 p.m. ET: You can watch the UTR Pro Match Series live on Tennis Channel. But if you're outside of the United States, you can also follow it on the below live stream.


11:12 a.m. ET: West Palm Beach may as well be Wimbledon over the next three days, as the tennis world shifts its attention to Florida for the second edition of the UTR Pro Match Series. Held in the same location as the men's event two weeks earlier, the women's event features three Americans—Danielle Collins, Alison Riske and Amanda Anisimova—along with Australian Ajla Tomljanovic, who has been staying in the Sunshine State since the coronavirus-imposed lockdowns began, in March.

March is the last time we saw any of these players in a competitive environment. Like so many other sports, it will not only be compelling to see the return of the game itself, but also the athletes and their forms (or lack thereof).

If the pre-lockdown world was any indication, here's a look at today's head-to-head matchups. (All matches are best-of-three sets, first-to-four games, with tiebreakers at 3-3 and no-ad scoring.)

12PM ET—Match #1: Amanda Anisimova (USA) vs. Danielle COLLINS (USA)

FOLLOWED BY—Match #2: Alison RISKE (USA) vs. Ajla TOMLJANOVIC (AUS)

FOLLOWED BY—Match #3:  Alison RISKE (USA) vs. Amanda ANISIMOVA (USA)