Credit One Bank Invitational: Team Peace leads Team Kindness 3-2

Credit One Bank Invitational: Team Peace leads Team Kindness 3-2

Ajla Tomljanovic (Team Peace), Amanda Anisimova (Team Kindness) and Bethanie Mattek-Sands (Team Peace) each posted one-point singles wins before rain washed out play on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, we saw what the Credit One Bank Invitational—a six-day team event that is one of the most ambitious tennis competitions held since mid-March—was all about. Rain truncated play, but we saw enough to watch Australian Open champion Sofia Kenin and rising star Leylah Fernandez (who this February reached the final of Acapulco at 17) pick up right where they left off before the months-long interruption, with commanding victories for their respective sides.

On Wednesday, we were unfortunately given a reprise: spurts of impressive tennis, but longer bouts of rain.

Before play was called, Team Peace led Team Kindness, 3-2. Of the 12 players scheduled to compete on Day 2, just six were able to complete a match. Those singles contests—all worth one point in the progressively increasing scoring system—are detailed below, along with Thursday's revised schedule. If the weather gods allow, we'll see tennis from early afternoon deep into the Lowcountry night.


Thursday's Schedule

Matches will be aired live on Tennis Channel beginning at 4 p.m. ET.

Jennifer Brady (Team Peace) vs. Victoria Azarenka (Team Kindness)
One-Point Match

FOLLOWED BY/TO CONCLUDE
Eugenie Bouchard/Danielle Collins (Team Peace) lead Sloane Stephens/Amanda Anisimova (Team Kindness), 6-4, 0-1
One-Point Match

FOLLOWED BY
Caroline Dolehide (Team Peace) vs. Madison Keys (Team Kindness)
One-Point Match

FOLLOWED BY
Emma Navarro (Team Peace) vs. Alison Riske (Team Kindness)
Two-Point Match

FOLLOWED BY
Eugenie Bouchard (Team Peace) vs. Leylah Fernandez (Team Kindness)
Two-Point Match

FOLLOWED BY
Bethanie Mattek-Sands/Sofia Kenin (Team Peace) vs. Victoria Azarenka/Madison Keys (Team Kindness)
Two-Point Match

FOLLOWED BY
Ajla Tomljanovic (Team Peace) vs. Monica Puig (Team Kindness)
Two-Point Match

Wednesday: Match 3

Bethanie Mattek-Sands (Team Peace) d. Monica Puig (Team Kindness), 6-1, 6-3
Team Peace leads Team Kindness, 2-2


Credit One Bank Invitational

Puig wasn't just playing her first match since the pandemic stopped tennis, she was playing her first match of 2020, period. It looked like it, quite frankly, with the 2016 Olympic gold medalist donating errors to a veteran opponent and mistiming plenty of shots.

But that shouldn't take away from Mattek-Sands, who brought some of her doubles prowess to this singles contest. With a barrage of slices and drop shots—and the follow-up winners to back them up—the crafty captain of Team Peace seemed to have Puig on a string. It made Puig's missed sitter, when she hit a short ball directly back at Mattek-Sands—who then promptly hit a winner—all the more infuriating.

Mattek-Sands' timing was superb in every respect. Seconds after she converted match point, the court was pelted with rain in a downpour.

Wednesday: Match 2

Amanda Anisimova (Team Kindness) d. Danielle Collins (Team Peace), 7-5, 6-4
Team Kindness and Team Peace tied, 2-2


Credit One Bank Invitational

Anisimova returned with a vengeance. When play was suspended Tuesday night, the 2019 French Open semifinalist trailed Collins 4-1. On Wednesday, she took six of the first seven games to effectively win 6-1, 6-4.

The difference? Anisimova's return game. She caught Collins off guard right away on Day 2, breaking twice before Collins could stabilize with her serve. But by that point a tone had been set, one that wouldn't change even as Collins settled into this two-part match. Collins bested Anisimova at the UTR Pro Match Series in West Palm Beach, Fla., but Anisimova—whose play in her home state was subpar, even considering the lengthy layoff—turned the tide in a big way on Wednesday.

"Once I got out there I kind of calmed my rhythm and was going for my shots more," said Anisimova. "I was definitely nervous yesterday because, you know, I didn't want to let my team down, and I'm playing for them too."

Anisimova saved some of her biggest returns for last. At 4-4 in the second, Collins took a 15-0 lead, but then had consecutive serves returned for winners. Another big Anisimova return helped earn her the final break she'd need to close out the contest.


"I got some more practice in today and I came out playing really well," said Anisimova, with an air of kindness.

Wednesday: Match 1

Ajla Tomljanovic (Team Peace) d. Shelby Rogers (Team Kindness), 6-1, 6-2
Team Peace leads Team Kindness, 2-1


Credit One Bank Invitational

In a non-televised match, Tomljanovic continued her return to the game with a drama-free victory. The Australian also competed in last month's UTR Pro Match Series, going 1-1 against Alison Riske (win) and Amanda Anisimova (loss) in Fast4 play. Both Riske and Anisimova, as it turns out, are opponents Tomljanovic could face this week.

Rogers' Charleston roots are well known, but her results at home haven't been great: aside from a quarterfinal run in 2017—which included wins over Naomi Osaka and her captain, Madison Keys—she's just 3-6, including qualifying matches.