While the action is still heating up in Moscow, where top seeds are enjoying their first-round byes, the BGL BNP Paribas Luxembourg Open is in full swing.
Top seed and 2010 Luxembourg champion Roberta Vinci came through with a bizarre victory over Olga Govortsova, bageling the Belarusian in the first and third sets, but getting crushed in between. In the two sets Vinci won, Govortsova won six and nine points on her serve, while in the second set of the match Govortsova converted all three of her break opportunities and we got the score 6-0 2-6 6-0. Vinci is world No.15 in singles, while in doubles she’s a fresh No.1, as of this week.
Second seed Julia Goerges stormed past Silvia Soler-Espinosa 6-2 6-1, hitting nine aces and losing just nine points in eight service games. It’s a perfect revenge for Goerges, who has recently suffered an agonizing 1-6 7-6(5) 6-2 loss to the Spaniard in Seoul, after being a set and a break up.
Jelena Jankovic, seeded third in Luxembourg, had an easy way through as her opponent, Peng Shuai, against whom she had lost last three meetings, retired with a right shoulder injury trailing 0-3. Remember, in August, in Cincinnati, Jankovic lost to Peng 5-7 7-5 7-6(8) in the first round, despite having five match points in the three-hour thriller. A lucky escape for JJ, who in the post-match interview said that she was pleased with her game and concentration and was unfortunate to have to win in this way.
Venus Williams is also in the field and she was in action on Tuesday, winning 6-3 6-1 against wildcard Belinda Bencic of Switzerland.
Victoria Azarenka did not come to Luxembourg to defend her title. The world No.1 has won back-to-back titles in Beijing and Linz and is now preparing for the WTA Championships in Istanbul. (photo: © Neal Trousdale)