CALIFORNIA: Venus Williams avoided an upset at the hands of fellow American Caroline Dolehide, holding off the 19-year-old 7-5, 6-1 to claim her first round match at the Rogers Cup on Monday. Williams, coming off a disappointing quarter-final loss at the Silicon Valley Classic last week, fell down a break early but recovered to turn back her dangerous opponent. "I think she had a really great second serve," Williams told reporters, of Dolehide. "I think I got a better feel for it in the second set. In the first set, I was still figuring it out."
Dolehide displayed her full potential in March when she nearly took down world number one Simona Halep at Indian Wells. Against Williams, the young player lost momentum late as Williams claimed 12 of the final 14 games of the match. The only two other seeds in action during the opening day were ninth seed Karolina Pliskova and 10th seed Julia Goerges who both won. Pliskova beat Katerina Siniakova 6-4 6-4 while Goerges overcame Timea Babos 3-6 7-6(3) 6-4. Among those yet to play are top-ranked Halep and number two Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark. The top eight seeds all received first-round byes.
Meanwhile, Serena Williams was in a "funk" last week because she felt her hectic schedule was not leaving her enough time to care for her 11-month old daughter, the 23-time grand slam champion said in a social media post on Monday. The 36-year-old American pulled out of the Rogers Cup in Montreal on Saturday citing "personal issues", days after she was beaten 6-1 6-0 by Johanna Konta in the first round of the Silicon Valley Classic, the most lopsided defeat of her career.
"Last week was not easy for me. Not only was I accepting some tough personal stuff, but I just was in a funk," Williams said in an Instagram post. "Mostly, I felt like I was not a good mom," "I read several articles that said postpartum emotions can last up to 3 years if not dealt with. I like communication best. Talking things through with my mom, my sisters, my friends let me know that my feelings are totally normal.
"It's totally normal to feel like I'm not doing enough for my baby." Williams said feeling overwhelmed was a normal part of being a new mother and encouraged anyone struggling through a rough patch to stay positive. "We have all been there. I work a lot, I train, and I'm trying to be the best athlete I can be," she said. "However, that means although I have been with her every day of her life, I'm not around as much as I would like to be. "Most of you moms deal with the same thing. Whether stay-at-home or working, finding that balance with kids is a true art. You are the true heroes. "I'm here to say: if you are having a rough day or week-it's ok-I am, too!!! There's always tomm!" - Agencies