Sharapova fights back to reach third round

Maria Sharapova continued her march at the US Open after coming from behind to beat Hungary’s Timea Babos.

Sharapova followed up her shock win over number two seed Simona Halep by producing an impressive fight back against Babos to triumph 6-7, 6-4, 6-1.

The 30-year-old – playing in her first Grand Slam since serving a 15-month drugs ban – got stronger as the contest wore on at Flushing Meadows to set up a last 32 clash against teenager Sofia Kenin.

Sharapova said: “It wasn’t my best tennis, I felt it was a scrappy match.

“But I think in the second set I felt like I was physically fresh.

“I wanted to be the fittest player out there in the end, and I felt I was.

“Every day I play at the US Open is a special day and I look forward to the next one.”

Sharapova found herself 4-2 down in the first set, but then battled back to force a tiebreaker. However, Babos controlled proceedings during the tie break, before eventually winning it 7-4.

Babos struggled to cope with Sharapova’s power in the second set though, with the five-time Grand Slam winner taking it 6-4 to level the match.

The deciding set was one way traffic, with Babos boasting no answer to Sharapova’s serve and power.

Sharapova will be joined in the third round by Venus Williams after the veteran American cruised past Oceane Dodin 7-5, 6-4.

The 13th seed Petra Kvitova was even more comfortable, as she coasted to a 6-1, 6-2 win against Alize Cornet.