Li, Castano Win; Myskina Up Tuesday at Stockholm

Posted on August 8, 2006

STOCKHOLM, Sweden -- Li Na opened her summer hardcourt campaign successfully Monday at the Nordea Nordic Light Open, the only summer hardcourt event on European soil. The No.2 seed ousted Maret Ani, 61 75, on Sunday in the Swedish capital.

Li plays either Martina Muller or Yulia Beygelzimer in the next round. The Chinese ace is making her first appearance at this Tier IV event. She played her last Sony Ericsson WTA Tour match two months ago at Wimbledon, where she became the first Chinese to reach a Grand Slam quarterfinal. On July 10, she rose to No.22 in the singles rankings, ahead of compatriots Zheng Jie (No.35) and Peng Shuai (No.54). After that, she won both of her singles rubbers in China's 4-1 Fed Cup World Group I Play-off victory over Germany.

No.5 seed Catalina Castano also advanced into the second round with a 76(3) 63 victory over Yuliana Fedak. The Colombian finished the clay court season in style two weeks ago by making the quarterfinals at Budapest. Castano also reached the quarters on the clay courts of Charleston and Istanbul this year but hasn't had many impressive results on hardcourt. Her next opponent here is Tsvetana Pirnonkova.

No.7 seed Iveta Benesova and No.8 Klara Zakopalova (formerly Koukalova) were eliminated. Benesova fell victim to wild card Caroline Wozniacki and Zakopalova was ousted by Martina Sucha.

Also successful on Monday was Pironkova, who beat Nathalie Vierin, 75 63.

In doubles action, No.1 seeds and two-time Grand Slam champions Zheng Jie and Yan Zi ousted Daniela and Sandra Klemenschits, 61 62. Kristina Barrois and Agnieszka Radwanska defeated Zsofia Gubacsi and Andreja Klepac, 61 60.

Barrois, Sorana Cirstea, Stephanie Cohen-Aloro and Urszula Radwanska won their qualifying matches Monday to save a spot in the main draw.

On Tuesday, No.1 seed Anastasia Myskina will face off against Alicia Molik and No.4 Sofia Arvidsson will play Emma Laine in the night session.
-- WTA