Jessica Pegula earns first win of the season at United Cup

Pegula's straight set victory over Australian Ajla Tomljanovic was anything but easy

Paul Kane/GettyImages
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Jessica Pegula picked up her first victory in two tries this season at the 2024 United Cup. Pegula, who dropped her first match of the season to Katie Boulter in the first round, defeated Australian Ajla Tomljanovic in two highly competitive sets 7-6, 6-3.

Pegula, the 2023 WTA Finals runner-up, had to win to keep the United States's chances alive of repeating as United Cup champions. The US is 1-1 against Australia; Taylor Fritz lost the earlier match to Alex de Minaur. It will be up to Pegula and Fritz to team up in mixed doubles. The two have one mixed doubles win already over Australia.

Ajla Tomljanovic's 2023 season was curtailed by injury, but she played a great match in her comeback. Tomljanovic returned many balls forcing Pegula to hit multiple winners on the same point.

Jessica Pegula's doubles skills were on display

In addition to being a Top 5 singles player, Pegula is also a Top 5 doubles player with partner Coco Gauff, and those skills were on display on short balls and at the net. She turned improbable situations at the net into winners.

In less than 24 hours, women's tennis has seen two compelling tiebreaks, last night Naomi Osaka prevailed 11-9 at Brisbane International, and Pegula won the first set tiebreak against Tomjlanovic 8-6. If this is an omen for the WTA in 2024, tennis fans are excited. Some of the highest quality serves, shots, and tactics were on display in these tiebreakers.

Pegula looked relieved to get this match decided in two sets knowing that she would face another battle later today with Fritz in mixed doubles. Meanwhile, Fritz, who asked Pegula to play United Cup this year partly because of her doubles prowess, was looking on during her match and talking tactics with teammates on the bench. Hopefully, this leads to another winning effort by Pegula and Fritz for the US later today.

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