MEMPHIS, TN, USA - A day after defending champ Magdalena Rybarikova was eliminated from the Memphis International, top-seeded Nadia Petrova was stunned by qualifier Camila Giorgi in first round play on Monday.
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This was just Giorgi's second career WTA main draw match, having lost her opener at Wimbledon last year. However, she showed few signs of nerves against the Russian in racing out to a 5-1 first set lead and a 4-0 second set lead en route to the 64 62 triumph.
"Everything went well tonight," Giorgi said. "My serve was consistent. I just feel I played well and stayed focused on the match. I hope to keep going like this."
This was the second straight year and the fifth time in the event's 11-year history that the No.1 seed lost their opener.
"She didn't give me any rhythm. She was playing very aggressive," Petrova said. "Clearly she wanted to play two-stroke rallies, hard through the middle and put it away. So it was really difficult for me to get into the match. She produced very good tennis today and I thought at some point maybe she would have trouble closing it out, but she stayed solid throughout the whole match."
Another seed also fell, as Michaella Krajicek made quick work of sixth-seeded Elena Baltacha, 62 61. Third-seeded Lucie Hradecka and fourth-seeded Marina Erakovic did advance, with Hradecka beating Anna Tatishvili, 63 61, and Erakovic defeating Sloane Stephens, 46 60 61.
"At first it was pretty tight and then I got going in the second and third set," said Erakovic, who reeled off 11 straight games after dropping the first set. "I think I just started to play more aggressive. I started stepping in and taking the ball a little bit early and with that I managed to get a few more winners and start moving her around more."
In a couple of noteworthy matches involving unseeded players, 2006 Memphis champion and 2010 runner-up Sofia Arvidsson was a 62 63 winner over Heather Watson, and Lesia Tsurenko saved two match points in the second set of her 26 76(5) 62 victory over American qualifier Alexa Glatch.