Germany’s Andrea Petkovic began putting her revitalised training routine into practice, with the world No.28 reaching the second round of the Dubai Tennis Championships on Monday with a 6-2 6-1 defeat of Camila Giorgi.
The 28-year-old Petkovic had considered quitting the sport last December after the end of a poor season, but instead returned home and shook up her coaching team, vowing to work to restore her form.
The results of the program were evident in her 63-minute win over Giorgi, a victory which ended a two-match loss streak from the Australian Open and Fed Cup for Petkovic.
“All the work paid off, things are coming together for me,” she said.
“I’ve worked hard over the past few weeks to be ready here and I was able to translate good training onto the match court. I’m very happy with how I played.” The winner broke on six of a dozen chances and kept her unforced error count to 15 versus 33 for Giorgi, who still leads Petkovic 3-2 in their career series. Giorgi saved two match points in the final game before taking the loss.
Petkovic could face ninth-ranked Belinda Bencic in the second round if the teenaged Swiss seed who played the weekend St Petersburg final beats Jelena Jankovic in the first round in the emirate.
Petkovic, now with a new coaching team which appears to be working well for her, said she was pleased with her progress.
“I’m finding the balance between consistency and going all out for your shots, coming in on the short ball – I think I did that quite well today,” she said.
“I feel much more ready physically than I did last year and I’m looking forward to the season.” There was a win for Madison Brengle of the US, who defeated Russian Ekaterina Makarova 6-4 7-5 after coming from a break down to win the opening set but trailing 4-0 in the second.
Kristina Mladenovic of France held off a late charge from Lesia Tsurenko of the Ukraine for a 6-2 7-6 (7-1) win.
The top four seeds – Simona Halep, Garbine Muguruza, Carla Suarez Navarro and Petra Kvitova – all have first-round byes in the tournament in which lost Serena Williams and Germany’s Australian Open winner Angelique Kerber due to injury.