Tuesday, 24 August 2010

WTA New Haven - Russians race into 2nd round

All three Russians progressed to the 2nd round of New Haven after winning their first round matches on Monday. First up was Elena Dementieva who handily defeated Martinez Sanchez, who was making a welcome return from injury. Dementieva was dominant on serve especially in the 1st set where she lost only 1 point on her serve. After struggling in her recent tournaments, I expect Dementieva to have her best run here where a QF match-up with Marion Bartoli looks on the cards. Dinara Safina also came through after turning the tables on Schiavone after a 6-3 6-4 loss in Montreal. This time round, Safina overcame a disappointing first set to win 1-6 6-3 6-1. It was another win that highlighted Safina's steady improvement over the last three weeks and sets up an enticing 2nd round clash with Daniela Hanutchova. With her seeding lost for the US Open, Safina will be a threat for the top seeds.

Nadia Petrova was the third Russian to come through on Monday however she had to overcome a seemingly impossible 6-1 5-2 deficit to Varvara Lepchenko before she completely transformed her game and came through losing just one more game. Petrova's form since the French Open has been disappointing but Petrova will look to get some more matches under her belt before the US starts. In other results, Kateryna Bondarenko won her first match since the French Open beating also out-of-form Petra Kvitova. Dominika Cibulkova also won through after scraping past the disappointing Melanie Oudin, who has failed to reach the heights of her QF appearance at the US Open last year.

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