Germany’s Julia Goerges booked a second-round meeting with the world number one Victoria Azarenka at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships after coming from behind to beat three-time finalist Svetlana Kuznetsova, of Russia.
Kuznetsova convincingly took the first set 6-2, but narrowly lost the second on a tie-break and then the third 6-4. The former French (2009) and US Open (2004) champion lost the 2011 final here to Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki 6-1, 6-3.That was the third such time Kuznetsova had fallen at the final hurdle at the Aviation Club after coming so close in both 2004 and 2008, losing to Belgium’s Justine Henin (7-6 (3), 6-3) and countrywoman Elena Dementieva (4-6, 6-3, 6-2) respectively.
Kuznetsova’s compatriot Maria Kirilenko had earlier sealed her spot in the next stage with a straight-sets success over Monica Niculescu, of Romania, 6-3, 6-0.Niculescu broke in the third game of the opening set to lead 3-1 initially, but Kirilenko hit back with five consecutive games — including two service breaks — to take the opener.That one-sided dominance continued thereafter as Kirilenko wrapped up the second set in 36 minutes, with three service breaks and holds apiece.
She will next meet either seventh-seeded Italian Francesca Schiavone or Ana Ivanovic, of Serbia.“I did everything right,” this year’s Pattaya Open runner-up said. “It was very windy; I think I found the way to play. Everything was working well for me and that’s why it was, kind of, an easy match for me.“I liked my forehand a lot. I played my forehand from each position of the court. I was just enjoying playing such a good forehand and having a lot of fun on court.“I have confidence because I’ve played so many matches in the last couple of weeks.” – Kahleejnews