Schnyder Advances in Doha; Henin, Hingis on Tap Wednesday

Posted on February 27, 2007

DOHA, Qatar - For the second day in a row two seeds took the court; but unlike Monday, they weren't both winners. On Tuesday in Doha, Patty Schnyder moved on while Anna-Lena Groenefeld was sent home as the first round came to completion at the $1.34 million Qatar Total Open.

Schnyder started and finished strongly during a 62 26 62 win over hard-hitting French teenager Aravane Rezai. The Swiss seems to be regaining her form in the Middle East; several sub-par showings earlier on in the season have forced her out of the world's Top 10 but she made a good run in Dubai last week, reaching her first quarterfinal of the year. She is the No.5 seed this week.

Groenefeld was not so lucky in her opening round, falling to Ukrainian qualifier Kateryna Bondarenko, 75 46 63, in just over two hours. The German, who was the No.7 seed in the Qatari capital, has had a disastrous start to the season, her 1-6 record now including five first round losses and just one second round run at the Australian Open. But it is reminiscent of her beginning to last year: she began 2-5 then hit her stride, winning 18 matches during the clay season. That run won her the Acapulco title and took her to the Roland Garros quarterfinals.

A trio of Top 40 players who missed out on seedings were also winners Tuesday, namely No.32 Anabel Medina Garrigues, who rallied past Meghann Shaughnessy, 36 63 62; No.33 Maria Kirilenko, who downed qualifier Anne Kremer, 61 62; and No.39 Eleni Daniilidou, who crushed Tunisian wild card Selima Sfar, 60 63.

Maria Elena Camerin, Alicia Molik and qualifier Julie Goerges also won opening rounds. Molik, a former No.8, moved past Ai Sugiyama when the Japanese veteran was forced to retire down 3-1 in the third set due to a right toe injury.

Notable doubles winners were No.3 seeds Janette Husarova and Kveta Peschke and wild card pairing Martina Hingis and Kirilenko.

A quartet of Top 10 stars will grace the Wednesday schedule. No.1 seed Justine Henin opens against Molik; No.2 seed Svetlana Kuznetsova battles Goerges; No.3 seed Hingis plays Kirilenko; and No.4 seed Jelena Jankovic faces Camerin. (WTA)