Vera Hangs On, Wins First Match Back

Playing for the first time since her run to the Wimbledon final, Vera Zvonareva prevailed.

Published August 03, 2010 12:00

Vera Hangs On, Wins First Match Back
Vera Zvonareva

SAN DIEGO, CA, USA - The seeds made a strong beginning at the Mercury Insurance Open Tuesday, with Vera Zvonareva - seeded No.3 and playing her first match since her first Grand Slam final at Wimbledon - among the winners.

Watch live tennis this week on TennisTV.com - $30 off annual pass!
(blackout applies to European territories due to rights restrictions)

Zvonareva, who shot back into the Top 10 after the magical run at the All-England Club, where she was runner-up to Serena Williams, suffered a mid-match lapse, losing five of six games in one stretch, but eventually closed out feisty Slovak Dominika Cibulkova in three sets, 60 36 64.

"It was a tough one. I started really well, but she's a great fighter and started playing more aggressively," Zvonareva said. "I was up and down a little bit and she was able to relax and come back. That third set was a great fight."

No.4 seed Agnieszka Radwanska and No.5 seed Flavia Pennetta won in straight sets, although they were close. Radwanska edged qualifier Chanelle Scheepers in the first set and rolled through the second for a 75 63 win; Pennetta rallied from 5-2 down in the second set - saving four set points along the way - to beat talented Ukrainian Kateryna Bondarenko, 62 75.

Check out photos from San Diego right now in the gallery!

Earlier in the day, No.7 seed Shahar Peer kept her perfect record against Ana Ivanovic intact, beating the former No.1 for the third time in as many meetings. Ivanovic seemed to be on top as she built a 3-0 lead in the first set tie-break but Peer reeled off seven points in a row then completed a 76(3) 63 victory.

"When I was down 3-0, I started to build the points better and became more consistent. When I had my chances, I went for them," Peer said. "I was trying to dictate today. Hardcourt is my favorite surface. I grew up on hardcourts."

"I had chances but I never made that step. My timing was also off on my returns. But she didn't make many mistakes," Ivanovic said. "It's very frustrating. I feel really good in practice, but it's just not coming together in matches."

Svetlana Kuznetsova, a former world No.2, pulled off the only upset of the day, ousting No.8 seed Yanina Wickmayer in a see-saw, 63 26 61.

"I felt my game, which hasn't happened in a long time," said Kuznetsova, who has fallen out of the Top 20 after a disappointing season that has seen her reach just one quarterfinal in 11 tournaments. "If I'm being a perfectionist, I would be disappointed with the second set, but I'm happy about the result."

At night, Daniela Hantuchova pulled off an impressive comeback win over Marion Bartoli, saving three match points at 36 45 and eventually outlasting the No.6 seed, 36 76(3) 64. Hantuchova will face Zheng Jie next.

"She was playing unbelievably and there wasn't much I could do in the first set," Hantuchova said. "I moved really well on the match points and tried to stay in the match. I felt the longer the match went, the better it was for me."

Zheng, Maria Kirilenko, Yaroslava Shvedova, Melanie Oudin and Coco Vandeweghe also won first round matches. Vandeweghe, a qualifier, won when Gisela Dulko had to retire down 60 30 with an ankle sprain.

"It's unfortunate what happened to Gisela, but I'm happy to be here and hope to keep it going," the 18-year-old American said. "I'm playing a lot of matches and playing well. It's also nice to play at home and have that support system. I've been getting a lot of text messages, which is nice."

Tennis Warehouse

Share this page!

Related news

  • US Open Draw: Maria Vs Simona In QFs?

    August 21, 2014
    Who did Serena Williams draw first round? Could the Top 2 on the Road To Singapore leaderboard really play each other in the quarters? See the draw right here!
  • Kvitova Secures New Haven SF Spot

    August 21, 2014
    Petra Kvitova defeated fellow Czech Barbora Zahlavova Strycova and is a win away from her third straight appearance in the Connecticut Open final.
  • Xerox's Road To Singapore: The Series

    August 21, 2014
    You've been following the WTA stars on the Road To Singapore all year. Now go even deeper behind the scenes with Road To Singapore: The Series, presented by Xerox.
To The Top