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Hantuchova off to blazing start; Obziler and Chang book last 8 berth

Kolkata, Sep 19 (UNI) Second seed and World No 10 Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia did not shed a drop of sweat as she outclassed her Polish oppnent Maria Domachowska 6-2, 6-1 in the Sony Ericsson WTA Tier III Sunfeast Open here today.

Hantuchova, who reached the city only late last night, as she was chilling out in Bali after her loss in the final there to Lindsay Davenport on last Sunday, stirred quite a storm at a promotional pasta-cooking event this morning and made short work of her day's business on court at the Netaji Indoor Stadium here as she just took 61 minutes to breeze past Domachowska.

The 11th ranked Slovkian used her trademark double handed backhand to great effect to which the Polish girl had no answer.

Today Hantuchova showed that she meant business as she broke her opponent as early as in the second game of the first set. The Slovak later clinched the opening set with a break in the eighth game when Domachowska made an unforced error by hitting the ball at the net.

The second set was even more one-sided with the Polish girl able to hold her serve only once in the second game. Hantuchova then won the next five on the trot to win the set 6-1.

''It was a good match. All my shots worked today. Like Bali I just tried to give my best and I guess it worked for me again. The match wasn't as easy as it looked since my opponent played well and I had to come out with good shots,'' Huantuchova, who looked gorgeous in a burnt-orange georgett, said after the match.

About the surface here, the Slovak said, ''It's a very good surface, as good surface provided at any European indoor tournaments.'' Meanwhile, Tzipora Obziler of Israel and Yung-jan Chang of Chinese Taipei entered the quarter-finals of Sunfeast Open, while Anne Kepthavong of England and Ukranian Maria Koryttseva entered the second round in their respective matches.

After a late night win yesterday, Obziler seemed a little stiff today, but the first set warmed the Israeli up.

However, after losing the first set, Obziler got Casey Dellacqua of Australia packing 4-6, 6-3, 7-5.

For Dellacqua, it was a match of missed opportunities. The 85th ranked Aussie, who has 11 ITF Circuit titles to her credit including four this year, had appeared in good touch in first round, but Obziler had the last laugh.

Dellacqua got to a smashing start against Obziler, pocketing the first set easily but Obziler did not take long to figure her mistakes.

The Israeli, one of the seniormost pros on the Tour, who has always been under the shadow of illustrious compatriot Shahar Peer, the brunette who teamed up with Sania Mirza to clinch the Bank of the West Classic in Stanford this year, launched a spectacular assault on the Dellacqua backhand and earned double breaks which was wnough to see her capture the second set 6-3.

In the decider, Obziler started moving much better and caught the burly Australian on the run. Dellacqua main weapon, her crushing forehand, was rendered ineffective as the Israeli kept asking questions with deep angled groundstrokes.

The breaks changed hands before Obziler got the decisive one in the 11th game to go 6-5 up with the serve. Dellacqua did herself no favours by losing her temper which also saw her reduced to conceding three match points in the final game.

Meanwhile, the day's first second round tie saw eighth seed Yung-Jan Chan of Chinese Taipei make short work of Jarmila Gajdosova from Slovakia 6-1, 6-2 in one hour and 27 minutes.

The Asian girl has had first round exits in all Grand Slams this year, but if she can add consistency to her potent game, she can become a dangerous opponent and achieve her modest goal -- that of reaching the top 30 in world rankings by the end of the year.

In two first round encounters, British girl Anne Keothavong defeated Italy's Sara Errani 6-4, 6-4, while Mariya Koryttseva of Ukraine put it past Monique Adamczak of Australia 6-3, 6-3.


Story first published: Wednesday, September 19, 2007, 20:35 [IST]
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