Aussie Sam Stosur longs for a second chance after her tight-throated effort in last year’s French Open final. She started her 2011 campaign with an easy win, defeating Czech Iveta Benesova 6-2, 6-3.
“Obviously, I thought of last year’s last match,” Stosur said after debuting on the stadium court. “It was nice to get out there again, and of course, if you can play on any court here, you’d want to play on that one….I think having made semis and a final, I think that kind of proves that I have been able to back it up and it wasn’t a fluke the first time.”
While the new-style power claycourter Stosur advanced, an old schooler was shockingly dismissed when No. 18 seed Flavia Pennetta was upended by unseeded American Varvara Lepchenko in three sets. No. 19 seed Shahar Peer was likewise dismissed by Spaniard Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez.
Lepchenko will next face fellow American Bethanie Mattek-Sands, another winner on Sunday.
Only one qualifier drew the unlucky straw on the day, with German Mona Barthel beating Austrian mom Sybille Bammer in straights.
German shooting star Julia Georges, who beat world No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki en route to the Stuttgart title this year, says don’t look to her as a Roland Garros favorite — yet.
“I don’t think I have a big chance for the title here because I have never reached further than the third round in a Grand Slam, so we shouldn’t be talking here about winning a Grand Slam,” she said.
Monday’s highlights include defending champ (5) Francesca Schiavone vs. Melanie Oudin, (3) Vera Zvonareva vs. Spanish claycourter Lourdes Dominguez Lino, (1) Caroline Wozniacki vs. senior citizen Kimiko Date-Krumm, (25) Maria Kirilenko vs. Coco Vandeweghe, Anastasia Rodionova vs. (26) Nadia Petrova, an all-Italian match-up in (30) Roberta Vinci vs. Alberta Brianti, (29) Shuai Peng vs. Tamira Paszek, and (16) Kaia Kanepi vs. Sofia Arvidsson.
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Schiavone Heimlichs Choking Stosur for French Open Title
Stosur-Schiavone French Final a Happy Affair
Stosur, Schiavone Unlikely French Open Finalists
Stosur Wins at WTA Charleston; Schiavone in Barcelona
Wozniacki Beats Schiavone, Secures WTA No. 1; Isner v. Monfils in France Friday