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Pervak Targets Maiden Title In Tashkent

Young guns Ksenia Pervak and Bojana Jovanovski are shooting for their maiden WTA titles as the top two seeds at the Tashkent Open.

Published September 11, 2011 02:41

Pervak Targets Maiden Title In Tashkent
Ksenia Pervak
TASHKENT, Uzbekistan - In consecutive weeks in July, Ksenia Pervak reached her first WTA semi, at Bad Gastein, and then her first final, at Baku, where world No.3 Vera Zvonareva ended her run. So this week the 20-year-old Russian will try to go one better as top seed at the Tashkent Open, a $220,000 hardcourt International event.

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Thanks to her exploits so far this season, which have also included reaching the fourth round at Wimbledon, Pervak has almost halved her ranking from No.97 to No.52. But she'll have to hit the ground running at the Olympic Tennis School, because her first round opponent is resurgent Galina Voskoboeva. Pervak beat the Kazakh in a three-set semifinal at Baku, but since then Voskoboeva has claimed scalps of the caliber of Maria Sharapova and Marion Bartoli, so she won't go quietly.

Bojana Jovanovski, another youngster surely set for a breakthrough title soon, is the No.2 seed. The 19-year-old Serb opens her campaign against a player who has been there, done that: Sorana Cirstea, who beat Sabine Lisicki in the final here in 2008.

Frenchwoman Pauline Parmentier, who upset Daniela Hantuchova to reach the second round at the US Open, is seeded third, ahead of Latvia's Anastasija Sevastova at No.4. The second tier of seeds holds plenty of promise too, with Magdalena Rybarikova, a two-time WTA title winner, seeded fifth and defending champion Alla Kudryavtseva back as the No.6 seed.

Russia's Evgeniya Rodina is the No.7 seed while Aravane Rezai, recently the runner-up to Lisicki at Dallas, is seeded eighth. The popular Frenchwoman may not be the crowd favorite in her opener, though - her opponent is Uzbekistan's star player, the powerful Akgul Amanmuradova.

Wildcards have been awarded to 15-year-old Kamilla Farhad, who hails from Azerbaijan, and local players Sabina Sharipova and Nigina Abdurimova. The doubles field is headed up by Kudryavtseva and Olga Govortsova

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