Taiwan’s Hsieh Su-wei fell to a crushing defeat in her opening round-robin match at the season-ending WTA Tournament of Champions in Sofia on Tuesday as Caroline Wozniacki sped to an easy straight-sets victory.
Top seed Wozniacki defeated Hsieh 6-2, 6-2 in 60 minutes, while it took Roberta Vinci five minutes longer to rout Slovakia’s Daniela Hantuchova 6-1, 6-2.
Wozniacki converted all five of her break points and only lost her serve once, in the second set.
“I always try to finish my matches in two sets and I am happy that this time it worked,” said Wozniacki, who is coming off titles in Seoul and Moscow. “I will try to finish this season with a hat-trick.”
Wozniacki’s straight-sets victory was nothing like her last meeting with Hsieh in Beijing a few weeks ago, when she trailed Hsieh by a set and 3-0, before finding her range and grinding out a 6-7(5/7), 7-6(7/3), 6-0 victory.
Earlier, fourth-seeded Vinci dominated throughout against Hantuchova, breaking the Slovakian five times. The two traded breaks to start the second set, but the Italian then jumped out to a 4-1 lead to take control.
“I was playing well — when I’m playing well it’s difficult to play against me. I don’t think she was comfortable with my game,” Vinci told the WTA Web site. “If I continue to play like this I think I have a good chance at making the semis or final this week.”
Hantuchova acknowledged that Vinci was a worthy winner.
“I never go onto the court not believing in myself — but today she played extremely well, not making any mistakes, especially in the first set,” Hantuchova told the WTA Web site. “She totally outplayed me and all of the credit to her for the way she played against me out there today.”
Wozniacki was next scheduled to face Vinci, with the winner likely clinching a spot in Saturday’s semi-finals. The first two in each group advance.
“It’s going to be tough — Roberta changes the rhythm up a lot,” Wozniacki told the WTA Web site. “I’ll have to be prepared for that — it’s going to be a tough one tomorrow [Wednesday].”
In the other group, Bulgaria’s Tsvetana Pironkova came from behind to defeat sixth seed Zheng Jie of China 2-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7/4).
Pironkova took a 3-0 lead in the third set, before being forced into a tiebreaker.
The WTA Tournament of Champions in Sofia features the six highest-ranked players who have won a title during the season, but did not qualify for the WTA Championships, along with two wild cards.
It is the final event on the WTA calendar.