Canadian Eugenie Bouchard took full advantage of her wild card entry in Prague on Monday, reaching the second round with an upset of eighth seed Veronika Kudermetova.
Victory on the clay of the Czech capital marked the first Tour match for the WTA 330 in exactly seven months since her quarter-final on january 10 in Auckland.
She last won on clay at Gstaad, in July, 2018.
Bouchard advanced in 76 minutes as the WTA finds its way in the second week of the COVID-19 comeback after the Tour was shut down for the health emergency in March.
“I’m proud of myself for battling in every single game. It ended up going my way most of the time,” Bouchard said.
“I stayed on it every point and didn’t make too many loose errors. I played solid and aggressive, which is what I try to aim for.
“My rhythm was off on my serve in the first set, so I need to look at that. I felt better with it in the second set, so I’m happy I could find a solution.”
Bouchard, who played World Team Tennis last month in West Virginia said she was glad to get back to official matches.
“It’s hard to know what to expect. I haven’t played a real match since January.
“I’ve played a couple of exhibitions, which helped a lot, but it’s still different, it’s not a real tournament. I didn’t set any expectations.
“I’m grateful to have a job and to have this opportunity. You appreciate things more when they’re taken away from you.”
Bouchard advanced with 13 winners and 10 unforced errors