“It Wasn’t Easy”: Serena Williams Battles Past Against World No.148 Mihaela Buzarnescu at French Open 2021 2nd Round

Published 06/02/2021, 2:27 PM EDT
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – May 31, 2021 Serena Williams of the U.S. reacts during her first round match against Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier

In a relentless pursuit to win her 24th grand slam title, the American tennis legend Serena Williams entered the Roland Garros with little to no expectation, with the reason being her two stunning losses to Nadia Podoroska and Katerina Siniakova at the Rome Masters and Parma Open respectively.


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This lack of expectations surrounding Serena Williams is a blessing in disguise as she can focus on winning a point instead of thinking about the match. The American made a winning start to her French Open campaign by defeating the Romanian Irini Camelia Begu in straight sets 7-6(6), 6-2.

Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – May 31, 2021 Serena Williams of the U.S. in action during her first round match against Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu REUTERS/Sarah Meyssonnier

Serena played against yet another Romanian Mihaela Buzărnescu in the second round. The American meant business in the first set as she came out attacking Buzarnescu. With gigantic first-serves, Serena managed to sail through her service games. 


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Coming to the Romanian, she only gave two break-point chances to Serena. But, the American managed to convert one break-point to win the set 6-3.

Serena Williams lost a closely-contested second set against Buzarnescu at French Open 2021

It was Serena’s match to lose from the second set onwards. The first-serve percentage dropped a bit and the American looked exhausted to continue the aggression. She even tried to come to the net a few times to disrupt Buzarnescu but the plan failed.

The Romanian took advantage of a vulnerable service game from Serena and raised to a 4-2 lead in the second. With loads of experience thrusting her forward, the 23-time grand slam champion put enough pressure on Buzarnescu and won the next game.

Having found her way back from a couple of topsy-turvy games, the American found her mojo back and leveled the set at 4-4. The pressure was back on Buzarnescu as she has to win her next service game to stay in the match.

The Romanian delivered with back-to-back cross-court backhand winners and took a lead of 5-4. Even with a drop in level, Serena Williams made sure of applying constant pressure on Buzarnescu’s serve.

Serving at 5-5 in the second, Mihaela Buzarnescu was down with three break-points. But, her wide first-serves didn’t give much room for Serena to time the ball properly. The Romanian took advantage of this and won the 11th game.

Just when a tie-breaker was expected to happen, Serena’s lack of first serves at the opportune moment coupled with Buzarnescu’s incredible forehand winners ensured a set-point to the latter. An unexpected forehand error from the American took away the set from her as Buzarnescu made a startling comeback to win the second, 7-5.

Serena was invincible in the third set against Buzarnescu

Coming to the third set, it was the Romanian who had the pressure as she served the first game. She didn’t look ready to start again after a grueling second set. The momentum was with Serena as she got to a quick lead of 3-0.

There was no room for Buzarnescu to recover and make a comeback as the American looked invincible on-court. But, the Romanian still surprised Serena and the crowd with her elegant gameplay.

But, it was too late for Buzarnescu as the former world number one remained a couple of points away from winning the match. After an entertaining two-hour battle, Serena Williams won the match 6-3,5-7,6-1.

The American praised Buzarnescu for her entertaining display of tennis throughout the match.


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She plays particularly well on this surface. She has had a lot of good wins. I knew it wasn’t gonna be very easy. But, I am excited to having get through that“, Serena commented during the on-court interview

A block-buster contest awaits tennis fans when Danielle Collins faces Serena for a place in the pre-quarters at the French Open 2021.


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Sagar Ashtakoula

226 articles

Sagar Ashtakoula is a tennis writer at EssentiallySports. He has been following the sport since 2007. Having developed an interest in creating content, he mixed his passion for writing with his love for tennis for 2 years at SportsKeeda before joining the tennis team at EssentiallySports.