Hello, and welcome to Sports Mole
's coverage of the match between Petra Kvitova
and Misaki Doi
in the US Open
First of all, I will bring you the good news that the rain that interrupted last night's evening schedule has cleared, so we will be getting underway as scheduled.
Kvitova comes into this year's US Open as the number seven seed, but she has never progressed past the last 16 at Flushing Meadows. Doi, on the other hand, has won just three Grand Slam matches, so the former Wimbledon champion will be expected to coast through this match.
It appears as though the start of the match as been slightly delayed on the Arthur Ashe court. We will bring you updates as soon as we begin.
Ah, the players have finally emerged. Not too sure what the delay was. We must be getting started in just a few minutes.
It will be Doi to serve first.
BREAK! The two players share the opening four points, but it's Kvitova who strikes first in the match to quickly move a break up.
If you thought that Doi would lose encouragement after that first game, think again, because she engineers a break point after Kvitova nets, but she floats a forehand return just wide. She creates another chance, but again, she can't keep the ball on court. The number seven seed finally edges through the game to consolidate the break.
BREAK! I knew this would happen. As soon as I start praising Doi, she produces a stinker of a game. She throws in a double fault at 0-30 to give Kvitova three break points, and the Czech player takes the first of them when Doi nets.
That's better from the 22-year-old Japanese player, who fires a backhand winner from the baseline for 15-15. Kvitova takes the next two points, but Doi has her opponent on the run during the next rally to remain in the game. The former Wimbledon comes through though, to establish a 4-0 advantage after 17 minutes.
Kvitova earns two break points after Doi goes long from the baseline, but a fine one-two off her serve helps Doi take the game to deuce. The 22-year-old gets on the board after she successfully challenges a call on her serve, before sealing the game when Kvitova can't return.
Kvitova has gotten into a rhythm on her serve now, and she eases into a 30-0 lead. Doi pulls a point back, but Kvitova overpowers her opponent when stepping into court to put away a couple of forehands.
Doi finally gets a bit of luck, when the ball strikes the top of the net and drops over. Her opponent then goes long twice in succession to hand Doi three game points, before the Japanese player concedes a double fault. A return winner takes Kvitova to 40-30, but Doi responds with her first ace of the match to remain in the set.
SET! Kvitova takes the first point, but two unforced errors hand Doi a chance at 15-30. The Czech left-hander then nets to hand Doi two break points, but Kvitova shows fine defensive play to get back to deuce. An ace then brings up set point, before a thunderous forehand is too hot to handle for Doi.
Doi needs a fast start to this set, but she is immediately on the back foot after a huge forehand down the line from Kvitova. She fights back to 30-15, but two errors hand Kvitova a break point. The Japanese player shows tremendous heart, though, to take the the next three points to take an early lead in the second.
Kvitova has the tendency to get herself involved in three-set matches, and she nets a volley to allow Doi an opportunity at 30-30. However, the world number 92 makes two errors of her own, and Kvitova levels things up.
It is becoming increasingly evident that Kvitova is struggling a bit with her game, and Doi coasts into a 40-0 advantage, before the Japanese player converts an easy forehand put-away at the net to remain ahead in the set.
BREAK! The difference in this set is that Doi is coming out on top in the longer rallies. That happens once more at 15-15, before Kvitova throws in a double fault to hand her opponent two break points, which she takes when the Czech player goes wide.
The breeze on Arthur Ashe seems to be getting stronger, but it's Doi who is coping the better, blasting a cross-court winner for 30-0. Kvitova fight back to 40-30, but Doi comes through to regain her three-game advantage.
Kvitova has already made 18 errors, and she throws in two more to hand Doi 0-30. She remains composed to get to 30-30, but Doi benefits from a net-cord for the second time in the match to earn break point. Kvitova saves the first, and she is forced to do so twice more to avoid falling 5-1 behind before finally sealing the game.
After failing to win the double-break, this is an important game for Doi, but two quick points see her move 30-0 ahead. Kvitova then goes long off a return, but keeps in the game after Doi nets. However, the Czech player has completely lost her range, and Doi moves one away from leveling the match after Kvitova puts too much on a forehand.
Kvitova offers nothing at the start of the game, and after falling 0-30 behind, she dumps a forehand into the net to gift Doi three set points. But the Japanese player can't take any of them, going for too much at the wrong point in the rally on each occasion. She earns a fourth break opportunity, but again, Kvitova stays strong, and eventually forces Doi to serve for the set.
SET! That's monster hitting from Doi, who moves Kvitova around before driving a forehand into the corner for 30-0. Doi brings up three more set points, but Kvitova saves the first with a brutal baseline winner. However, at the sixth time of asking, Doi seals the second set when Kvitova blazes long, and we are into a decider on the Arthur Ashe Stadium court.
Remarkably, this is Kvitova's 30th three-set match of the year. Incredible start. She needed a positive start to the decider, and she gets it, taking the game when Doi nets a return.
BREAK! Doi opens up with a double fault, but gets back on track for 15-15. However, she fires two forehands long of the baseline to hand Kvitova two break points. She saves them both, but after conceding a third, she nets and the number seven seed has the early advantage.
I've lost count with the numbers of errors that have been made in this match. The pair make two more, before Doi just misses with an attempted backhand winner. Kvitova makes two more mistakes to give Doi a break point, but the sixth error of the game results in Kvitova getting deuce. The number seven seed shows a bit more quality over the next two points, firing a winner past Doi before getting plenty of speed of a first serve to force Doi to go long.
BREAK! The end looks near for Doi. She dumps a baseline shot into the net, and although a superb lob reduces the deficit to 15-30, she shows too much aggression and make another error. She saves the first break point, but Kvitova steps in to convert a forehand to seal the break to move into a 4-0 lead.
BREAK! It's still hit and miss from Kvitova, who hits a stunning winner moments after a double fault. The players move to 30-30, before Doi unleashes an excellent top-spin lob to bring up break point, but it is saved in fine style by Kvitova. But Doi shows plenty of fight and desire to keep Kvitova from coasting to victory, and a sharp return forces the Czech player to net.
BREAK! The standard of tennis has got marginally better over the past 10 minutes, but the errors are still there, and Doi goes long twice in a row to hand Kvitova two break points. Doi continues to be aggressive, but after hooking a forehand wide of the line, she is just a game away from going out of this year's tournament.
MATCH! Doi takes the opening point, but some super hitting takes Kvitova to within two points of the win. She nets for 30-30, but Doi goes long off a return to hand the number seven seed match point, which she takes with a huge winner down the line.
It was far from pretty but Kvitova seals her progress into the second round with a hard-fought three set win. It goes without saying though, that she will have to perform much better if she is to have any ambitions in winning her second Grand Slam title.
Doi performed slightly better than her world ranking suggests, but she will be disappointed that she couldn't make a greater impact in that final set.
That will be all from Sports Mole for this match. Be sure to stay with us though, with Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and Heather Watson in action later in the day. Goodbye for now.