Puig, Watson Advance On Day 1

Monica Puig © 2017 Michael Cummo/BNP Paribas Open

Great Britain's Heather Watson opened up main draw action on Stadium 1 at the BNP Paribas Open on Wednesday with a 4-6, 6-2, 6-2 victory over wild card Nicole Gibbs. That match would set a tone for the Americans on that court, all of whom were shut out in their first-round outings.

Rio Olympic Gold medalist Monica Puig dismissed Floridian wild card Danielle Collins 6-0, 6-2; wild card Bethanie Mattek-Sands of Arizona, who lifted the 2016 women's doubles trophy with CoCo Vandeweghe, earned only three games against Kristyna Pliskova of the Czech Republic; and Christina McHale of New Jersey lost to lucky loser Evgeniya Rodina of Russia 6-1, 6-0.

17-year-old Catherine Bellis, still in her first year as a professional, succumbed to Kirsten Flipkens 4-6, 6-1, 6-4, setting up the Belgian to meet No. 7 seed and reigning Roland Garros champion Garbine Muguruza.

Watch Flipkens Shot of the Day

The Americans fared better around the grounds, with Kayla Day and Louisa Chirico posting straight-set victories over Kurumi Nara of Japan and qualifier Francesca Schiavone, respectively. Sara Errani, Yanina Wickmayer, Monica Niculescu, and Johanna Larsson were among the day's other winners.


Thursday's schedule will see the bottom half of the draw play out their first round, including 2010 BNP Paribas Open champion Jelena Jankovic versus wild card Irina Falconi, Canada's Eugenie Bouchard playing Germany's Annika Beck, and Chinese qualifier Peng Shuai against Lesia Tsurenko of Ukraine. A slew of other Americans are on deck: Vania King, Alison Riske, qualifier Varvara Lepchenko, and all-American match-up between Shelby Rogers and wild card Jennifer Brady.