No.5 seed Duan Ying Ying fought through a tough opening match against India’s top-ranked singles player to advance at Zhengzhou WTA 125K.
Stephanie Livaudais
April 17, 2018

ZHENGZHOU, China - No.5 seed Duan Ying Ying moved into the second round at the 2018 Biyuan Cup Zhengzhou Women’s Tennis Open, a WTA 125K Series event, after fighting through a tough opener against Ankita Raina, 6-3, 5-7, 6-3.

Raina, India’s top-ranked singles player at No.194, did well to recover from dropping a one-sided opening set. Duan broke the Indian player twice in the first set, and didn’t allow Raina to convert on any of the four break chances she created.

Read more: Zheng stuns Peng in all-Chinese Zhengzhou opener

But in the second there were seven breaks of serve between the two of them as the momentum kept shifting, and Raina saved a match point on her way to edging through to force a decider.

Duan was under a lot of pressure in the final set as Raina refused to fade away. But Duan grabbed a decisive break early on to get ahead 3-0, and tamped down the Indian’s many comeback attempts to close out the match after two hours and 10 minutes on court.

Also in action, lucky loser You Xiaodi awarded a spot in the main draw after No.1 seed Zhang Shuai had to withdraw due to gastrointestinal issues. You took her second chance and ran with it, knocking out local wildcard Yuan Yue 6-3, 5-7, 6-2.

Meanwhile, another lucky loser wasn’t so lucky, with Zhang Kai-Lin - who took the spot after Lu Jing-Jing withdrew due to a lower back injury - falling to Lu Jia-Jing in straight sets, 6-2, 6-4.

Han Xinyun authored the day’s big upset, defeating No.7 seed Nao Hibino in a three set comeback battle, 2-6, 6-3, 6-3. Down a break in the third after splitting the opening sets, Han came back to win in just under two hours on court.  

Also through to the second round, Sabina Sharipova had to come back from a set down to oust Peangtarn Plipuech 4-6, 6-2, 7-6(2); and Miharu Imanishi knocked out Vitalia Diatchenko 6-4, 7-5.