Friday, October 5, 2012

Djokovic struggles, Stosur exits China Open

Updated October 03, 2012 10:36:02

Novak Djokovic made a rusty return to action at the China Open, while Samantha Stosur made a shock second-round exit at the hands of German Julia Goerges.

Djokovic, playing his first match since losing last month's US Open final to Andy Murray, beat German qualifier Michael Berrer 6-1, 6-7, (3-7), 6-2 in the men's first round, but the performance was far from impressive.

The Serbian world number two took the first set with ease but lost the second on a tie-break after hitting several unforced errors against the 123rd-ranked left-hander, before improving his groundstrokes for the decider.

"I had a tough time to really return his serve in the second (set), because he went for precision more than the speed of his first serves," Djokovic said.

"He had a very high percentage of first serves in and he put a lot of pressure on my serves. I tried to stay closer to the line in the third, and it worked."

Goerges, ranked 21st in the world, provided one of the day's upsets with her 7-6, (7-2), 4-6, 7-5 win over eighth seed Stosur.

A double fault from Stosur in the final set gave Goerges break point for the match, which she quickly put away.

Throughout the match, Stosur was frustrated by her mistakes and after falling far behind in the tiebreak, she earned a warning from the umpire for profanity.

World number one Victoria Azarenka, who pulled out of last week's Pan Pacific Open quarter-finals with fatigue, stormed into the third round by ousting Germany's Sabine Lisicki 6-4, 6-2.

Defending champion Agnieszka Radwanska also went through, defeating China's Zhang Shuai 6-2, 6-3.

Former world number one Caroline Wozniacki fought back from a set down to defeat Taiwan's Hsieh Su-Wei 6-7, (5-7), 7-6, (7-3), 6-0.

Chinese star Li Na brushed aside on-form Nadia Petrova of Russia in straight sets to progress to the last 16.

Asia's top women's player, who needs a strong showing this week to qualify for the WTA Championships in Istanbul later this month, won the match convincingly at a packed National Tennis Stadium 6-1, 6-2.

It was the 2011 French Open champion's first win against Petrova, who triumphed at the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo on Saturday, in seven attempts.

"That's the charm in playing tennis. Every day you can challenge yourself," Li said.

"You are defeated consecutively, but it doesn't mean you are defeated by her all the time. This is sport. You never know what's going to happen."

Men's second seed David Ferrer retired due to illness during the first set of his match against Taiwan's Lu Yen-Hsun, while third seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France battled to a 4-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7-3) victory over Uzbekistan's Denis Istomin.

French fifth seed Richard Gasquet easily accounted for Australian Matthew Ebden, downing him 6-2, 6-4.


Tags: sport, tennis, china

First posted October 03, 2012 10:33:08

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