American Serena Williams lost to Czech Klara Zakopalova last month, when they met on the claycourts of Marbella, but the second seed converted her ninth match point to advance to the second round of Roland Garros. Williams won 6-3 6-7(5) 6-4.
The world No.100 Zakopalova saved five match points at 3-5 in the second set, and took the set to a tiebreak to win it on her fourth set point. Zakopalova kept up the momentum in the third set by breaking early, but Williams then won four games in a row. It wasn’t the end of Zakopalova, though, as she saved three more match points at 5-2 down and then broke back in the next game. However, she was finally defeated on Williams' ninth match point.
Zakopalova gave Williams a hard time, but she wasn’t strong enough to beat the 2002 French Open champion on Grand Slam stage, even though Williams entered the match without wins on clay this season.
Williams' opponent in the second round will be world No.133 Virginia Ruano Pascual, who defeated Nicole Vaidisova in the opening round.
Some other first-round results: Fifth seed Jelena Jankovic, wearing the first non-boring ANTA dress, with nice detailing on the back, dominated Petra Cetkovska of the Czech Republic 6-2 6-3 to reach the second round of Roland Garros. Seventh seed Svetlana Kuznetsova also advanced in straight sets, as well as fourth seed Elena Dementieva. Virginie Razzano defeated Daniela Hantuchova 6-3 6-3. Tenth seed Caroline Wozniacki battled past Vera Dushevina 4-6 7-5 6-1, in a match that started yesterday. Jelena Dokic is through, while Sania Mirza and Francesca Schiavone. (photo: Ralf Reinecke)