'What is happening': Ash Barty caught in 'strange' drama at US Open

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Ash Barty, pictured here in action against Vera Zvonareva at the US Open.
Ash Barty's match against Vera Zvonareva was delayed for several minutes. Image: Getty

Ash Barty has powered into the second round at the US Open, but not before a strange drama with the electronic line judging that seemed to get under the World No.1's skin.

The Aussie star overcame a second-set scare against former finalist Vera Zvonareva on Tuesday to safely progress to the second round at Flushing Meadows.

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Barty had to save a set point in the tie-breaker before seeing off the Russian 6-1 7-6 (9-7) in a challenging opener.

The World No.1 blasted 11 aces, including her tour-best 300th of the year, and clubbed 31 clean winners to send an ominous warning to her rivals.

However the match wasn't without some drama, with Barty appearing to be derailed when the electronic line calling system malfunctioned early in the second set.

The malfunction caused a short stoppage, with Barty asking the chair umpire if they could be replaced by human judges.

The US Open has replaced human line judges with the electronic system in 2021, just like the Australian Open did earlier this year.

Barty was left shaking her head when her request was denied, seemingly fuming about the unwanted delay.

Up a set and a break at the time, the Wimbledon champion then dropped serve with a double-fault while trying to close out the match at 5-4.

She then had to stave off a set point with a booming off-forehand winner in the breaker before holding her nerve to seal victory after one hour and 28 minutes.

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Ash Barty expresses relief after surviving US Open scare

Contesting her first match in New York in two years after sitting out the 2020 event during the height of the global pandemic, Barty expressed relief at surviving a stern test.

"It obviously got really tense in that second set - tight - and in the bigger moments I was able to be aggressive and trust myself and that was a massive thing today," the top seed said.

"There were a couple of games where I had lapses in concentration but I was able to come through in straight sets and now we go back to the drawing board, work on a few things and we'll be as happy as Larry.

"I'm certainly happy to be through and playing again here in New York."

Ash Barty, pictured here after defeating Vera Zvonareva at the US Open.
Ash Barty celebrates after defeating Vera Zvonareva at the US Open. (Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

Chasing her sixth title of the season after landing her fifth in Cincinnati last week, Barty next plays Danish teenager Clara Tauson on Friday for a place in the last 32.

Meanwhile, Australian No.2 Ajla Tomljanovic also needed barely an hour to race into the second round earlier on day two.

The Wimbledon quarter-finalist had too many guns for American teenager Katie Volynets, casting aside the teenager 6-1 6-3 in 63 minutes on day two at Flushing Meadows.

Tomljanovic broke Volynets three times and was completely untroubled on her own serve, striking four aces and winning 89 per cent of points after landing her own delivery.

The victory set up a meeting with Czech Petra Martic on Friday.

with AAP

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