Pennetta launches title defense with nervy win

Flavia Pennetta of Italy returns the ball to Denmark's Caroline Wozniacki during their women's singles tennis match at the WTA Dubai Tennis Championships February 19, 2015.  REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah

Flavia Pennetta of Italy returns the ball to Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki throughout their women’s singles tennis suit on the WTA Dubai Tennis Championships February 19, 2015.

Credit Score: Reuters/Ahmed Jadallah


(Reuters) – Italy’s Flavia Pennetta overcame an early bout of nerves to launch her BNP Paribas Open title defence with a commanding 6-Four 6-2 win over American Madison Brengle within the 2d spherical on Saturday.

The 33-12 months-old from Brindisi, highest known for her doubles prowess, broke her opponent once in a tightly contested opening set and twice more in the 2nd to wrap up victory in Seventy Five minutes at a sun-soaking wet Indian Wells Tennis Garden.

“I used to be frightened to start with,” Pennetta mentioned in a courtside interview after ending the suit with a rasping forehand crosscourt winner.

“Last yr right here, I performed so Smartly and I Have such good memories. This morning I woke up and i was a bit bit shaky. So I used to be seeking to be fascinated by what I needed to do, and no longer rush.

“That was once vital today,” mentioned the Italian, a winner of 10 WTA titles who had lost to Brengle in straight sets in their handiest earlier assembly eight years ago.

Pennetta, seeded Fifteenth this year, claimed the celebrated BNP Paribas Open crown 365 Days ago by means of crushing Poland’s sick Agnieszka Radwanska 6-2 6-1 within the ultimate.

As Radwanska struggled with a knee injury, the Italian triumphed in just over an hour within the California wasteland.

Pennetta will next meet either American Taylor Townsend or Australian Samantha Stosur who had been scheduled to play Later On Saturday.

In other matches, fifth-seeded Serb Ana Ivanovic, the 2008 champion here, hammered Kazakhstan’s Yulia Putintseva 6-Three 6-1 while Swiss Belinda Bencic beat Bojana Jovanovski of Serbia 6-2 7-6.

Afterward Saturday, Russian world quantity two Maria Sharapova was as a result of tackle Belgian Yanina Wickmayer earlier than sixth seed Eugenie Bouchard of Canada faces Czech qualifier Lucie Hradecka in a night come upon.

(Enhancing by using Gene Cherry)

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