NANCHANG, China – Arina Rodionova shocked defending champion Duan Ying-Ying, knocking her out in the first round of the Jiangxi Open in straight sets, 7-5, 6-4.
The Australian took one hour and 42 minutes to defeat the fifth seed.
"It was really tough conditions, it's very humid," said Rodionova afterwards. "I've played her this year twice, and I lost both times 7-6 in the third, so I knew it was going to be a really hard and physical match. I was preparing myself for it. I think today it was a little bit hard for both of us. I'm glad to manage to get through."
Rodionova will play Liu Fangzhou in the next round.
Sixth seed Jelena Jankovic also progressed in straight sets, beating 20-year-old Kang Jiaqi 6-2, 7-5.
"A win is a win," the Serbian said afterwards. "It's always nice to win a match, especially in the first round, the toughest. My opponent was a young girl, a very good player, and I really tried my best under these conditions - it's very hot outside, very humid, and it's really not so easy to stay out there. I tried to focus as much as I can and did the best that I could. I'm happy that I was able to win against my opponent today."
The 32-year-old is looking to bounce back from a disappointing Wimbledon campaign in which she lost in the first round to Agnieszka Radwanska, 7-6, 6-0.