Canadian Andreescu toils to win in first match in 15 months

Bianca Andreescu faces a second-round matchup against Taiwan's Hsieh Su-wei, who earlier beat U.S. Open quarterfinalist Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria 7-5 6-2.

Bianca Andreescu of Canada celebrates after winning a point in her Women's Singles first round match against Mihaela Buzarnescu.   -  Getty Images

Canadian eighth seed Bianca Andreescu was made to work hard on her return to competition after 15 months, the 2019 U.S. Open winner digging deep to see off Mihaela Buzarnescu of Romania 6-2 4-6 6-3 in the Australian Open first round on Monday.

The 20-year-old, playing her first match since retiring from the 2019 WTA Finals in Shenzhen with a knee injury, moved assuredly on court and showed no signs of discomfort against the world number 138.

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Despite going through 14 days of hard quarantine after arriving in Australia, Andreescu breezed through the opening set with two breaks of serve.

However, Buzarnescu, 32, raised her game in the second set and levelled the match as the Andreescu's unforced error count began to creep up.

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Down 0-40 and facing a break at 3-3 in the decider, Andreescu managed to find a different gear to hold serve and then won the next two games to seal victory.

She faces a second-round matchup against Taiwan's Hsieh Su-wei, who earlier beat U.S. Open quarterfinalist Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria 7-5 6-2.

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