eclipsed by rising Russian in Auckland, Ivanovic out
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[January 05, 2016]
(Reuters) - Former world number ones
Venus Williams and Ana Ivanovic endured a humbling start to the season
after the top two seeds were dumped out of the Auckland Classic in the
first round by unheralded opponents on Thursday.
Russian teenager Daria Kasatkina, ranked 75th in the world, claimed
arguably the biggest win of her career in taking out the seven-times
grand slam singles champion Williams 7-6(4) 3-6 6-3 in the
Australian Open warm-up event.
Williams, 35, made over 70 unforced errors in the scratchy display
where she won the title last year to kick off a standout season that
saw her claim the WTA's Comeback of the Year award after two other
tournament wins in China.
Former French Open champion Ivanovic had little answer to the
supreme serving of British qualifier Naomi Broady, who racked up 14
aces in a 7-5 6-4 win.
The 25-year-old from Manchester maintained her first serve
percentage at almost 70 as she took out the second seeded Serb to
leave the $250,000 tournament shorn of its headline acts.
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Dane Caroline Wozniacki was not at her best on the blue New Zealand
hard courts but avoided making it a hat-trick of first round exits
by former world number ones as she beat Danka Kovinic of Montenegro
(Writing by Patrick Johnston in Singapore; Editing by John O'Brien)
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