Gaz de France: Safina beats Chakvetadze

Updated: 25 February 2007 10:35 IST

Defending champion Dinara Safina beat Russian countrywoman Anna Chakvetadze 6-2, 6-1 in the opening round of the Gaz de France on Monday.

Gaz de France: Safina beats Chakvetadze

Paris:

Defending champion Dinara Safina beat Russian countrywoman Anna Chakvetadze 6-2, 6-1 in the opening round of the Gaz de France on Monday.Safina broke Chakvetadze five times but also double-faulted nine times."It was difficult, as it always is when I play against another Russian,'' said Safina, whose record against Russians on tour was 13-12. Also, France's Stephanie Foretz upset eighth-seeded Anna-Lena Groenefeld of Germany 6-1, 1-6, 6-0; and Emilie Loit beat Italy's Roberta Vinci 6-2, 6-1 at Stade Pierre de Coubertin.Slump periodSafina believed winning the Gaz de France last year, her biggest title to date, also led to somewhat of a slump she had to endure over last summer."The hardest time for me was right after Roland Garros. I was wondering what was wrong with my game, why I was losing virtually every match I was playing,'' she said. After winning the indoor event then claiming her fourth career title in Prague, Safina entered the French Open seeded 25th and fell at the first hurdle to Virginie Razzano of France. Safina had middling results on grass and through the North American summer, then finished 2005 strong with three semifinals in her last four events.Australian Open champion and top-seeded Amelie Mauresmo has a first-round bye and will play either Vera Dushevina of Russia or Ivana Lisjak of Croatia on Wednesday. (AP)



Topics : Tennis
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