Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei, the winner of the Guangzhou Open earlier this month, defeated Zheng Saisai of China 6-2, 6-3 to ease into the second round of the China Open yesterday, while former world No. 1 Ana Ivanovic also eased through, defeating Christina McHale of the US in straight sets 6-3, 6-2.
However, it was a mixed day for Taiwanese players, with Jimmy Wang and Yang Tsung-hua being knocked out in the qualifying for the men’s singles competition.
Jan Mertl of the Czech Republic defeated Wang 6-2, 6-3, while Yang lost by the same score to Michael Berrer of Germany.
In the women’s singles, 24-year-old Ivanovic played aggressively from the start, hitting big first serves and powerful forehand drives, which McHale, ranked 28 in the world, was unable to match.
Ivanovic’s returns from McHale’s service game were too good for the 20-year-old, with the French Open champion of four years ago breaking the American in the eighth game of the first set and twice in the second.
“I think that was the best service game I have ever had,” said the 11th seed, who wrapped up victory within an hour, agreeing that it had been a “perfect” start to the Beijing tournament.
“The last match I played in Tokyo I served terribly. It was probably the worst I served in a very long time, so I was really determined to do better today,” she said.
“I really took more time and focused on that, because I knew I could serve well and I did it in practice. So I had attention to serve well today, and it worked well and I’m very pleased,” she added.
The world No. 12 next faces Varvara Lepchenko of the US, who defeated Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria.
In an all-Chinese clash, Zhang Shuai beat Wang Qiang 6-3, 6-2, while Romina Oprandi of Switzerland and Spain’s Carla Suarez Navarro also progressed to the second round.
In the late matches, No. 4 seed Petra Kvitova defeated Daniela Hantuchova 6-2, 6-3 and at press time, Tamira Paszek was ahead of Olga Govortsova 7-5, 0-5.