No.2 seed Kirsten Flipkens started strong at the Tashkent Open while Guangzhou winner Lesia Tsurenko kept up her winning ways.
WTA Staff

TASHKENT, Uzbekistan - No.2 seed Kirsten Flipkens kicked off her Tashkent Open campaign with a 7-6(7), 6-3 win over Ana Bogdan to reach the second round in Uzbekistan.

Bogdan is a young Romanian on the rise, having been thwarted by injuries earlier in her career. Hoping to crack the Top 100 for the first time, Bogdan earned the first break of the match to serve for the first set.

But Flipkens held firm, immediately breaking back as the Belgian kept her nose in front throughout the ensuing tie-break. Taking the first set on her third set point, Flipkens exchanged breaks with Bogdan in the second, but ultimately closed out the win in an hour and 42 minutes.

Up next for the former Wimbledon semifinalist is Greece's Maria Sakkari, who defeated Anna Karolina Schmiedlova in three sets on Monday.

No.6 seed Lesia Tsurenko also advanced; fresh off her second WTA title victory in Guangzhou, the Ukrainian dropped just two games to Evgeniya Rodina to win, 6-0, 6-2. Looking to win a seventh straight match, Tsurenko next plays Ipek Soylu, who won her first round by the same score.

Soylu's countrywoman and No.3 seed Cagla Buyukakcay wasn't was lucky, bowing out to lucky loser Sofia Shapatava, 6-1, 6-4.

"The Tashkent Open is lucky for me," Shapatava said after the match. "It was also my first ever WTA event in 2008; I got a special exempt to play here. I had a ticket to leave yesterday but I cancelled it as I got the lucky loser spot. Now I won the first round!

"I was very comfortable on the court; Cagla is tactical player and I had to take my chances."

Buyukakcay, who made Turkish tennis history by becoming the first from her country to win a WTA title in front of her home crowd in Istanbul, was understandably disappointed by the result.

"It was just not my day. I did not feel the ball. There are some days when things just dont work for you, and I was missing a lot of really close shots today."