Wozniacki, Ivanovic advance with ease

February 12, 2013 - 1:56:58 am

Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark in action against  Mervana Jugic-Salkic of Bosnia during their Round One tie of Qatar Total Open 2013 at Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex yesterday. Wozniacki won the match 6-1, 6-2. PICTURES BY: SHAIVAL DALAL/REUTERS

DOHA: Former world number one Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark and Ana Ivanovic of Serbia eased into the second round of the Qatar Open with straight-set victories at the Khalifa Tennis Complex yesterday.

Wozniacki crushed qualifier Mervana Jugic-Salkic 6-1, 6-2 and swiftly gatecrashed into the world top-10 with her straight-set win. 

The Dane had a poor start, losing her serve in the first game but picked up her game from then on. Wozniacki broke right back and cruised from there, wrapping up the win in just over an hour.

The 13th-ranked Ivanovic beat Tamira Paszek 6-1, 6-2. 

Ivanovic broke the 26th-ranked Austrian twice in the first set, then saved three break points to go up 4-2 in the second. 

She broke Paszek again to make it 5-2 and sealed the victory when the Austrian hit a return long.

In a late match last night, Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia won a tight battle against with Bethanie Mattek-Sands of the US, rallying from 4-2 down in both sets to beat the American qualifier, 7-6(1), 6-4. 

 Wozniacki, ranked and seeded No. 10 this week, dropped serve in the first game of the match but reeled off 10 games in a row from there to build a 6-1 4-0 lead, trading holds with Jugic-Salkic in the last four games until she emerged with a 6-1 6-2 win against the lucky loser from Bosnia and Herzegovina.

“As I’ve said before, it’s tough to play your first match at any tournament and tough to play an opponent you haven’t played before, but I just tried to focus on my game,” Wozniacki said after the match. 

“I felt like I served well and returned well during the match, so I was happy with how things went today,” she added.

Fittingly, the other former No.1 in action yesterday - Ivanovic - advanced by a 6-1 6-2 scoreline as well, against Tamira Paszek. But the big-hitting Serb needed an hour and six minutes to do it.

“I actually expected a very tough match with Tamira - it was a very tough first round, because we’ve had some battles in the past,” Ivanovic said. 

“But I started really well and was aggressive, and I just tried to do the things I’ve been working on. I did that well today. I felt like I was doing a lot of damage with my forehand, so I just tried to keep that game plan, and it all worked very well for me today.”

Other winners during the day were Mona Barthel, Simona Halep, qualifiers Anastasia Rodionova and Caroline Garcia and lucky loser Daria Gavrilova. 

Barthel’s win was her 13th of the year, putting her in a tie for second place alongside Agnieszka Radwanska for most wins.

First-round action continues at 3:30pm today.THE PENINSULA