After the top two seeds, Serena Williams and Victoria Azarenka, withdrew from the tournament this really opened up to anyone’s game, but not many people would have suspected that Sloane Stephens would crash in the first round. She lost in straight sets to Petra Cetkovska 7-5, 6-1. With the changes to the draw, Venus Williams was given a wildcard and cruised past Petra Martic 6-2, 6-2.
Stephens has struggled in the past to find enough motivation for matches outside the grand slams, but she also didn’t participate in the Fed Cup opening rounds due to a wrist injury. She battled hard in the first set, but couldn’t find the momentum she tends to show in grand slam events. Williams didn’t miss a beat in passing Martic, really capitalizing on her wildcard.
In other single matches, Roberta Vinci, the doubles dominator, didn’t show the same performance in her singles match against Tsvetana Pironkova and lost 6-3, 6-3. Annika Beck defeated Mona Barthel 7-6(5), 6-2, Su-Wei Hsieh defeated Flavia Penneta 7-5, 6-2 and Shuai Peng defeated Nadia Petrova 7-6(5), 7-5. Samantha Stosur defeated Marina Erakovic 6-4, 6-7(5), Yanina Wickmayer defeated Andrea Petkovic 6-4, 6-4, Jana Cepelova defeated Kristina Mladenovic 6-4, 7-6 (5), Bethanie Mattek-Sands defeated Eugenie Bouchard 7-5, 6-1, Monica Niculescu defeated Fatma Al Nabhani 6-1, 6-0, Karin Knapp defeated Caroline Garcia 6-4, 6-1, Stefanie Voegele defeated Alize Cornet 7-6(6), 7-5, Alisa Kleybanova defeated Dominika Cibulkova after Cibulkova retired in the first set 5-5, Lucie Safarova defeated Kirsten Flipkens 5-7, 6-4, 6-4, Kaia Kanepi defeated Varvara Lepchenko 6-3, 6-4, Anastasia Pavyluchenkova defeated Tadeja Majeric 5-7, 6-2, 6-3, Sorana Cristea defeated Alla Kudryavsteva 2-6, 6-1, 7-5, Mirjana Lucic-Baroni defeated Yvonne Meusburger 4-6, 6-2, 6-3, Klara Zakopalova defeated Elina Svitolina 6-2, 6-4, Ana Ivanovic defeated Daniela Hantuchova after she retired in the second set 7-5, 1-0, Karolina Pliskova defeated Cagla Buyukakcay 6-3, 6-3, Magdalena Rybarikova defeated Francesca Schiavone 7-5, 4-6, 7-6(3) and Shuai Zhang defeated Maryna Zanesvska 6-3, 6-2.
In doubles matches, Jelena Jankovic and Alisa Kleybanova defeated Varvara Lepchenko and Alexandra Panova 7-6(3), 0-6, 10-2, Irina Buryachok and Vitalia Diatchenko defeated Vera Dushevina and Arantxa Parra Santonja 6-3, 2-6, 10-3 and Karolina Pliskova and Kristyna Pliskova defeated Fatma Nabhani and Michaela Honcova 6-3, 6-2.
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