Sharapova breezes through in Paris
Wed, 08 Feb 21:10:00 2012
Top seed Maria Sharapova eased into the third round of the WTA Paris Open with a 6-3 6-1 dismissal of South African Chenelle Scheepers.
The former world number one from Russia dropped serve twice early in the opening set but an upset was never on the cards at the Pierre de Coubertin hall.
After being held 3-3 in the first set, she won nine of the 10 remaining games, taking victory after 68 minutes when Scheepers netted a routine shot.
"I struggled a little bit at the beginning because the surface is quicker than at the Australian Open or the Fed Cup," Australian Open finalist Sharapova said.
Italy's Roberta Vinci made it into the second round with a 6-4 6-4 win over Romania's Simona Halep.
World number 60 Halep battled hard against the world number 23, breaking her serve twice, but ultimately her flawed serving let her down as Vinci won in straight sets.
France's Alize Cornet went out in the opening round of the tournament, losing 6-3 6-1 to Czech star Klara Zakopalova.
Cornet, a former world top 20 player, was taking part in the event on a wildcard after her poor form last season saw her drop out of the world's top 100.
Pauline Parmentier gave the home crowd something to shout about, however, pulling off the day's biggest upset by beating Spain's Anabel Medina Garrigues 2-6 6-3 6-3.
Yani Wickmayer went through after Jill Craybas pulled out injured after losing the first set 6-1, Romania's Monica Niculescu came through a tough match against Australia's Jarmila Gajdosova before winning 6-1 4-6 6-4, while in the battle of the qualifiers American qualifier Bethanie Mattek-Sands beat Germany's Kristina Barrois 7-6(3) 6-2.