Svitolina beats Venus at Roland Garros

AFP

Ninth seed Elina Svitolina knocked seven-time Grand Slam champion Venus Williams out of the French Open on Sunday with a comfortable first-round victory.

The Ukrainian, twice a quarter-finalist at Roland Garros, eased to a 6-3, 6-3 win on the new Court Simonne Mathieu over the 38-year-old American who made her debut at the tournament in 1997.

Svitolina will face compatriot Kateryna Kozlova for a place in the third round.