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Serena Williams begins search for record-equaling 24th Grand Slam with win in French Open first round

September 28, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

Serena Williams began her search for her record-equaling 24th Grand Slam with a challenging win over fellow American Kristie Ahn in the first round of the French Open.

(CNN)Serena Williams began her search for her record-equaling 24th Grand Slam with a challenging win over fellow American Kristie Ahn in the first round of the French Open.

The 39-year-old trailed twice by a break in the opening set, eventually winning in a tie break before decisively sweeping aside 28-year-old Ahn.

It took Williams one hour and 41 minutes to eventually surpass Ahn 7-6 (7-3), 6-0 and advance to the second round at Roland Garros.

"I just need to play with more confidence, like I'm Serena.

Williams has won the French Open three times, the last victory coming in 2015.

In the second meeting between the pair in the space of a few weeks -- Williams beat Ahn in the first round of the US Open -- it was the world No. 101 who started the fastest.

Having not played on clay since losing to Sofia Kenin in the third round at Roland Garros in May 2019, Williams looked rusty which allowed Ahn to capitalize and race into a 4-2 lead in the opening set.

Williams battled back though, tying the score at 4-4 and after going to a tie-break, clinching the opening set with her seventh ace.

That doesn't mean I'm lowering my expectations," Williams said.

Williams will play Bulgaria's US Open quarterfinalist Tsvetana Pironkova in the second round.

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