Alizé Cornet defeated Ekaterina Makarova in early round action at the VTB Kremlin Cup, as Katerina Siniakova and Lesia Tsurenko also advanced.
WTA Staff
October 16, 2017

MOSCOW, Russia - France's Alizé Cornet overcame hometown favorite Ekaterina Makarova in first round action at the VTB Kremlin Cup on Monday, 6-3, 6-3.

Despite losing serve three times in the match, Cornet never trailed over the course of the one hour, 25 minute enocunter, breaking serve six times to score her second career win over Makarova.

"Basically, everything was working really well. I played a very solid and aggressive match, and I'm happy with how I played today," Cornet said. "I think my forehand was really good. I was changing direction and hitting the ball very well. It all went my way today."

On opening against a Russian in Moscow, Cornet added: "I think the crowd was pretty nice to me. I had some fans and I was hearing the support from them. It's never easy to play a local in her hometown, but I was just focused on what I had to do...from the first to the last point."

Earlier in the day on Center Court, Katerina Siniakova was impressive as she beat Croatia's Donna Vekic, 6-0, 6-2, in under 50 minutes.

The Czech wrapped up the first set in just 20 minutes, and although her opponent kept battling and got two games on the board, the result was never in question.

In other first round action in Moscow, Lesia Tsurenko overcame Christina McHale in a marathon two-setter, 7-6(4), 6-3.

The Ukrainian saved five set points in the 12th game of the opening set after taking a medical timeout for a knee injury, wrapping up the first set in nearly 90 minutes before taking the win in two hours, 12 minutes. 

To close out the day, Belarus' Aliaksandra Sasnovich defeated Timea Babos, who served for the match in the second set, 1-6, 7-6(3), 6-4, while Yulia Putintseva saw off 17-year-old wildcard Olesya Pervushina, 7-5, 6-1. 

Top seed Kaia Kanepi led the way for four main draw qualifiers, defeating the returning Alisa Kleybanova in a final set tiebreak, 2-6, 6-2, 7-6(3), and will be joined in the main draw by Belarusian teenager Vera  Lapko, Russian teenager Elena Rybakina, and Russian Polina Monova.