sport

Venus outlasts Date-Krumm

Venus Williams came from behind to defeat Kimiko Date-Krumm 2-6 6-3 6-3 in a battle of the veterans and reach the second round of the US Open.

The two players' combined age was 77, believed to be the oldest such pairing at a women's singles match at a grand slam.

Date-Krumm made a good start but Williams eventually took control before being distracted at 3-0 up in the deciding set when a bee flew close to her as she prepared to serve.

The 34-year-old first tried gently to wave it away, spending more than a minute moving from sideline to sideline while attempting to move it away.

Eventually two ball-people and another helper came out with towels to catch the bee and take it away from the court. With the bizarre incident over, Williams went on to complete the win.

Elsewhere in the first round of the women's draw, second seed Simona Halep had to come back from a set down to defeat Danielle Collins 6-7 (2-7) 6-1 6-2.

American outsider Collins threatened to cause a major upset at Arthur Ashe Stadium when she dominated the opening-set tie-break against the French Open finalist.

But Halep, who served seven double faults, managed to turn things around and win the next two sets comfortably to set up a second-round meeting with Jana Cepelova, who defeated Maria Teresa Torro Flor 2-6 7-5 6-1.

Sixth seed Angelique Kerber was also pushed to three sets before coming through to clinch a 6-2 3-6 7-5 win against Ksenia Pervak, who may have closed out the upset if not for her 56 unforced errors.

No 4 seed Agnieszka Radwanska had a much easier route through to round two as she thrashed Sharon Fichman 6-1 6-0 in just 47 minutes.

Jelena Jankovic eased past Bojana Jovanovski 6-2 6-3 in an all-Serbian clash, while home hope Sloane Stephens saw off Annika Beck 6-0 6-3.