MONTERREY, México - Kimiko Date-Krumm may be clinging onto her place in the Top 100 by the thinnest of margins, but on Monday evening at the Monterrey Open she proved her career is certainly not on the wane.
On a day of upsets, Date-Krumm sent the biggest shockwave through the draw with a 75 62 win over top seed and recent Indian Wells champion Flavia Pennetta.
"There was nothing to lose for me, so I just tried to focus on my tennis," Date-Krumm said. "Tennis is not only about power and speed. There are lots of other things which make a difference. A bit of luck also helps!"
Pennetta is Date-Krumm's 11th Top 20 victim since her return to the WTA in 2008, and the result was all the more impressive in light of the conditions in northern México.
"Today when I practiced before the match, I felt a little bit tired. It's very hot and humid, which is difficult for me, but I tried not to think about this and just concentrate on my game," Date-Krumm said.
Following her success in Indian Wells, Pennetta is on the verge of breaking back into the Top 10 and when she opened up a 5-3 lead in the first set she looked on her way to another win. However, Date-Krumm had other ideas, taking the next four games - and saving two set points - to pinch the opener.
In the second set, she continued to stymie the Italian, whom had no answer to her smorgasbord of spins and speeds. "Of course, I'm very happy. She's almost in the Top 10 and has been playing very well in the past few months. I think with my style I managed to frustrate her and give her a lot of low balls," she added.
Like Date-Krumm, Vekic came within a point of losing the first set before edging out No.5 seed Muguruza, 76(5) 76(2). Jaksic, meanwhile, continued her impressive start to the season with a 63 64 victory over No.7 seed Karin Knapp.