Yan shocks Kirilenko in Bangalore Open first round

March 5th, 2008 - 1:55 am ICT by admin  

By Saumojyoti Singha Choudhury
Bangalore, March 4 (IANS) Unseeded Chinese girl Zi Yan registered the first major upset of the $600,000 Canara Bank Bangalore Open, defeating eighth seed Maria Kirilenko of Russia in a tough three-setter in the first round of the Tier II event here Tuesday. Yan came from a set behind to shock the world ranked 27th 3-6, 7-6 (7) at the Karnataka State Lawn Tennis Association here and set up a second round clash against Olga Savchuk of Ukraine.

“In the first set I was little slow and could not catch the ball. I changed my game in the second set and concentrated on hitting the ball deep. I must say I was very lucky today,” said a jubilant Yan, who has two Grand Slam doubles titles in her name. She added that her main goal this year is to win a gold at the Olympics on home turf.

“I played tough tennis in the second set and in the decider probably, Maria (Kirilenko) was little tired,” she added.

Kirilenko, however, said that after losing the second set she was so upset that she couldn’t even concentrate on the last set.

“I don’t know what happened to me. After losing the match point in the second set, I was so upset that I was unable to concentrate on my game in the decider. But at the end of the day she played better than me,” a disappointed Kirilenko said after the match.

Meanwhile, India’s Isha Lakhani squandered a home advantage and her precious wild card to bow out of the tournament, while the Williams sisters Venus and Serena registered their maiden victory on Indian soil Tuesday.

Lakhani, ranked 357, was an easy prey for Agnes Szatmari of Romania as she dumped the Indian 6-2, 6-2 in one hour 32 minutes. On the other front, the charismatic Williams’ sisters notched their maiden win in India in just 94 minutes, defeating Andreea Ehritt-Vanc of Romania and Tamarine Tanasugarn of Thailand 7-6 (5), 6-4 in the doubles first round and set up a quarter-final clash with third seed Chinese pair of Shuai Peng and Tiantian Sun.

The Indian challenge in the singles came to an end with Lakhani’s exit. Shikha Uberoi, also a wildcard holder, had lost Monday in the first round, while US-based Indian Sunitha Rao failed to make the cut, losing in the qualifiers.

Lakhani was unable to keep her first serve in and made quite a few unforced errors. In contrast, Szatmari was content on keeping the ball in play and waited for her opponent to make mistakes.

Pouncing on the 23-year-old Mumbaikar’s weak serve, Szatmari, ranked 271 on the WTA charts, broke Lakhani in the first and third games of the opening set to go up 3-0 and then went on to win the set 6-2.

Lakhani met a similar fate in the second set as well, much to the disappointment of the handful of spectators.

The 21-year-old Romanian had a double break early in the set and that settled the issue. However, Lakhani had her chances when she pulled one back to make it 3-2. But Szatmari broke the Indian third time in the set in the seventh game and then served her way into match.

Meanwhile, in the doubles first round, the Williams’ sisters, here as wildcard, clinically destroyed Ehritt-Vanc and Tanasugarn in the first round.

Venus and Serena were a little scratchy in the beginning and lost both their opening service games to go down 0-3 in the first set. But they rallied and broke back, first Tanasugarn’s serve in the fourth game and then Ehritt-Vanc’s in the sixth to level the set 3-3.

From then onwards, the games went with serve and the set was decided on a tie-breaker which the American pair won 7-5.

As the match progressed, the sisters got better, and Serena, especially, was immaculate with her net play.

In the second set, Ehritt-Vanc and Tamasugarn were 1-3 down as the sisters got a break in the third game. The sisters fired 10 aces in the match to make it one-sided once they overcame the initial resistance.

In a late doubles encounter, fourth seed Russian duo of Anastasia Rodionova and Yaroslava Shvedova shattered Indo-Aussie pair of Monique Adamczak and Sunitha Rao 6-0, 6-1 in the first round.

In the other singles matches of the day, Olga Savchuk of Ukraine had to dig deep to beat Great Britain’s Katie O’Brien 6-4, 2-6, 7-5, Tzipora Obziler of Israel beat German Angelica Bachman6-2, 6-3, and Croatia’s Sanda Mamic had an easy outing against Yung-Jan Chan of Chinese Taipei 6-2, 6-2. Obziler will face third seed Serena Williams in the second round, while Mamic will play top seed Jelena Jankovic of Serbia.

Russian Anastasia Rodionova, ranked 86th in the world, had to encounter tough resistance from Chinese qualifier Tiantian Sun before winning 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-4.
She will meet sixth seed Sybille Bammer of Austria in second round.

Seventh seed Vera Znvonareva of Russia had to overcome a stiff resistance from unseeded Romanian Monica Niculescu 4-6, 6-3, 6-1 to secure her place in the second round where she will be up against Szatmari, while eighth seed Maria Kirilenko was

Day Two Results:


Olga Savchuk (UKR) beat Katie O’Brien (GBR) 6-4, 2-6, 7-5
Angelika Bachmann (GER) lost to Tzipora Obziler (ISR) 2-6, 3-6
Yung-Jan Chan (TPE) lost to Sanda Mamic (CRO) 2-6, 2-6
Anastasia Rodinova beat Tiantian Sun 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-4
Peng Shuai (CHN) beat Anne Kremer (LUX) 6-1, 6-2
Agnes Szatmari (ROU) beat Isha Lakhani (IND) 6-2, 6-2
Vera Zvonareva (RUS) def Monica Niculescu (ROU) 4-6, 6-3, 6-1
Maria Kirilenko (Rus) lost to Zi Yan (CHN) 6-3, 7-6(7), 6-1

Serena Williams (US)/Venus Williams (US) beat Andreea Ehrit-Vanc (ROU)/Tamarine Tanasugarn (THA) 7-6 (5), 6-4
Chunmei Ji (CHN)/Shengnan Sun (CHN) beat Angelika Bachmann (GER)/Debbrich Feys (BEL) 2-6, 7-5, 10-7

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