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Flavia Off To Flying Start

In the first match of her Palermo title defense, Flavia Pennetta cruised in just 63 minutes.

Published July 13, 2010 12:00

Flavia Off To Flying Start
Flavia Pennetta

PALERMO, Italy - Flavia Pennetta was in top form in the first match of her title defense in Palermo on Tuesday, cruising past Kathrin Woerle, 63 61.

Pennetta, who won this title last year without losing a set and is the No.1 seed this year, won a routine first set then dropped just 10 points in a 25-minute second set for a one-hour, three-minute win over the 148th-ranked Woerle.

"It was really hot today, so I'm happy I was able to win quickly," said Pennetta, ranked No.12. "Playing in Palermo is fantastic for me for a lot of reasons. In particular the supporters have always been fantastic to me."

Click here to see pics from Flavia's title run in Palermo last year!

Aravane Rezai, the No.2 seed and last week's Bastad champion, won her sixth match in a row, beating Simona Halep, 75 46 62. Halep won the second set and was up a break early on in the third before Rezai fought back.

Sara Errani beat Mariya Koryttseva in the final here in 2008, then in the first round here in 2009; and in the feature night match the No.3-seeded Errani dealt Koryttseva her third straight loss at this event, beating the Ukrainian, 62 63.

"Mariya always plays well in Palermo, so I prepared well for this match," Errani told the Italian press afterwards. "I'm happy with this victory and I hope to keep going in this tournament because I'm Italian and I really like Palermo!"

No.8 seed Julia Goerges and No.9 seed Alberta Brianti were also among the winners, but No.7 seed and recent Top 50 debutante Arantxa Parra Santonja wasn't as lucky, losing to Masa Zec Peskiric, 75 63.

Renata Voracova, Ioana Raluca Olaru, Nuria Llagostera Vives, Mirjana Lucic, Corinna Dentoni and Romina Oprandi also scored first round wins. Lucic was involved in the most dramatic match of the day, losing 10 straight games after winning the first set to go down 4-0 in the third, then saving three match points en route to a 75 06 76(7) victory over Pauline Parmentier.

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