Kuala Lumpur: Defending champion Alisa Kleybanova was knocked out of the Malaysian Open in the second round by Michaella Krajicek of the Netherlands 3-6, 6-4, 6-3 on Thursday.
The first set went as expected for the Russian, but third-seeded Kleybanova's serve became more erratic and Krajicek broke twice in the second set to force a third. The Dutchwoman won three straight games for 5-2 and served out.
Former No. 1 Dinara Safina, trying to recover her game after a back injury last year, also fell short of the quarterfinals, losing to fifth-seeded Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 in a two-hour crowd-pleaser.
"This loss will not hinder me in my quest to get back to my best form," Safina said.
Second-seeded Marion Bartoli of France beat Ekaterina Ivanova of Russia 6-2, 6-1, and fourth-seeded Jarmila Groth of Australia accounted for Misaki Doi of Japan 7-6 (6), 6-3.