Su-Wei Hsieh upset in Pattaya
Su-Wei Hsieh (Gallo Images)
Pattaya, Thailand - Third seeded Su-Wei Hsieh tumbled out of the Pattaya Open 6-2, 6-2 to unfancied New Zealander Marina Erakovic on Monday as the women's tour resumed normal business after the Australian Open.
Looking to bounce back from a poor Open, the Taiwanese world No 25 failed to make a match of it as the unseeded Erakovic cruised to victory on the opening day of the competition proper in Pattaya.
Thai wildcard Varatchaya Wongteanchai delighted the home crowd with a 6-3,6-3 win over Germany's Annika Beck, while Alexandra Panova also advanced to the second round after Romanian Irina-Camelia Begu retired a set down and trailing in the second.
In the last first round match of the day, France's Mathilde Johansson dispatched Taiwan's Kai-Chen Chang 6-4, 6-3.
The big names join the event on Tuesday with two-time champion Daniela Hantuchova, drafted in at the last minute due to a withdrawal, looking to start her title defence strongly against Russian minnow Olga Puchkova.
Former world No 1 and tournament top seed Ana Ivanovic will take on Japan's Ayumi Morita, hoping the extra day recovery from a disappointing Australian Open will translate into a long-awaited return to form.
Ivanovic is yet to return to her scintillating form of 2008 when she won the French Open and made the Australian Open final, but the Serb has said her game is close to a level where she can challenge again.
Russian second seed Maria Kirilenko plays Uzbek qualifier Akgul Amanmuradova in the first ever competitive match between the pair, while fourth seed Sorana Cirstea and veteran Kimiko Date-Krumm also face-off on day two of the tournament.
Results on Monday from the Pattaya Open at Dusit Resort (seedings in parentheses):
Marina Erakovic, New Zealand, def. Su-Wei Hsieh (3), Taiwan, 6-2, 6-2.
Varatchaya Wongteanchai, Thailand, def. Annika Beck, Germany, 6-3, 6-3.
Alexandra Panova, Russia, def. Irina-Camelia Begu, Romania, 7-6 (6), 3-2, retired.
Mathilde Johansson, France, def. Kai-Chen Chang, Taiwan, 6-4, 6-3.