Australia’s Daria Gavrilova has continued her strong form with a 6-2 6-2 first-round upset of Lucie Safarova at the Kremlin Cup.
The 22-year-old, following on from a stunning run which included victory over world No.1 Angelique Kerber to reach the semi-finals at the Hong Kong Open last week, maintained her hot streak with victory over the former world No.5.
Gavrilova took control of Tuesday’s match midway through the first set, winning seven consecutive games to claim the set and the opening three games of the second.
“I tried to play more long-rallied, but she (Safarova) was making a lot of mistakes in her second or third shots,” Gavrilova said.
“She didn’t perform her best today.”
The world No.37 Australian did not give the 2015 French Open finalist a break point in the match.
Meanwhile, Croatian teenager Ana Konjuh ousted sixth-seeded Barbora Strycova, winning 6-4 1-6 6-2.
The 18-year-old Konjuh will now face either Latvia’s Anastasija Sevastova or Russian qualifier Anna Blinkova in the second round.
Earlier, former top-ranked Jelena Jankovic of Serbia beat Latvia’s Jelena Ostapenko 6-3 6-3 in a match featuring 15 breaks of serve.
“It was very difficult for me to hold my serve because my opponent was returning very well and she was at times making so many great winners,” Jankovic said.