Coco Gauff suffers surprise defeat to Katerina Siniakova in Qatar Open

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Coco Gauff lost six games in a row in a shock defeat by Katerina Siniakova at the Qatar Open.

Making her first appearance since losing to Aryna Sabalenka in the semi-finals of the Australian Open last month, Gauff was out of sorts and fell to a 6-2 6-4 defeat.

The American second seed looked to have turned things around after losing the opening set when she eased into a 4-0 lead in the second set.

But Czech Siniakova, better known for her achievements in the doubles game, responded with six games in a row for one of the biggest singles victories of her career.

Naomi Osaka defeated Petra Martic in straight sets at the Qatar Open (AP)
Naomi Osaka defeated Petra Martic in straight sets at the Qatar Open (AP)

It was brighter news for Japan’s Naomi Osaka who earned a straight sets victory over Croatia’s Petra Martic. Osaka controlled the opening set, setting her own rhythm and tempo before Martic fought back in the second to force a tie break. Osaka held her nerve though and ran out the winner with an 11-9 triumph.

Elena Rybakina continued her winning run by comprehensively sweeping aside China’s Zhu Lin 6-2 6-1. The World No. 5 secured her second title of the season in Abu Dhabi and looks like a strong contender to win in Qatar too.

Melbourne runner-up Zheng Qinwen, playing her first match as a top-10 player, came through 6-2 2-6 6-3 against Magda Linette, while teenager Linda Noskova, who was a quarter-finalist at the Australian Open, upset seventh seed Maria Sakkari 3-6 7-6 (2) 7-5.

Leylah Fernandez recovered from losing the first set to love to defeat Paula Badosa 0-6 6-2 6-3 and Victoria Azarenka was a 7-6 (2) 6-2 winner over Wang Xinyu.