German fourth seed Angelique Kerber worked hard to beat Elina Svitolina of the Ukraine in the first round of the Sydney International women’s tournament on Monday.
Kerber needed just under two hours to get past the unseeded Svitolina 4-6, 6-0, 6-3.
In other first round matches, unseeded Sara Errani of Italy caused an upset by convincingly beating Spain’s seventh seed Carla Suarez Navarro 6-3, 6-3.
Australian home favourite Samantha Stosur spent two hours and 35 minutes on court to get past US Open losing finalist Roberta Vinci of Italy 4-6, 7-5, 7-5 while Puerto Rico’s Monica Puig worked hard to get past Magdalena Rybarikova of Slovakia 6-2, 3-6, 6-4.
Germany’s Sabine Lisicki cruised past Polona Hercog of Slovenia 6-4, 6-3 and Russia’s Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova beat Lara Arruabarrena Vecino of Spain in straight sets, winning 6-1, 7-6(1).
Ekaterina Makarova of Russia had few problems when she overcame Czech Republic’s Lucie Hradecka 6-2, 6-1 but eighth seed Belinda Bencic of Switzerland was pushed all the way by Mirjana Lucic-Baroni of Croatia before winning 7-6(6), 1-6, 6-4.