Kleybanova Wins Opener

Alisa Kleybanova beat Chang Kai-Chen handily in the first round of the Hansol Korea Open.

Published September 20, 2010 12:00

Kleybanova Wins Opener
Alisa Kleybanova

SEOUL, South Korea - World No.28 Alisa Kleybanova made an impressive start to her Hansol Korea Open campaign on Monday afternoon, easing past Chang Kai-Chen in an hour and 24 minutes on Centre Court, 62 63.

Kleybanova, the No.5 seed at the International-level event, lost her serve three times against the talented Taiwanese but broke her opponent six times and overall was strong on serve, finishing off with her fourth ace of the match.

"I'm happy I won. I played well and stayed focused through the whole match," Kleybanova said. "For the past few I haven't been playing well, so I feel I really need some matches to win now to get my confidence and feel on the court."

This is Kleybanova's second time playing in Seoul. She made the quarterfinals last year and almost made the semifinals, leading Kimiko Date Krumm, 64 52, with match point at 64 53; but she fell to the eventual champion, 46 76(4) 63.

Next for Kleybanova will be Ksenia Pervak, who rallied from 1-5 in the second set - and saved set point at 2-5 - to beat Chan Yung-Jan in straights, 64 75.

In other first round matches, Ekaterina Makarova edged Iveta Benesova, 62 36 75, while Elena Baltacha defeated Korean wildcard Kim So-Jung, 63 64.

Bojana Jovanovski, Simona Halep, Junri Namigata and Hsieh Su-Wei snapped up main draw berths with victories in the final round of qualifying.

This year's Hansol Korea Open boasts four of the world's Top 25: No.19 Nadia Petrova, No.20 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, No.24 Maria Kirilenko and No.25 María José Martínez Sánchez. They are seeded No.1 through No.4.

Also in this week's draw are former No.1s Ana Ivanovic and Dinara Safina; last year's winner Date Krumm; and, in the doubles draw, reigning Wimbledon and US Open champions Vania King and Yaroslava Shvedova.

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