Anastasija Sevastova inflicted a final-set bagel on fellow Latvian Jelena Ostapenko to move into the second round of the Stuttgart Open, while Lara Arruabarrena upset Carla Suarez Navarro in the Istanbul Cup.

Seventh seed Sevastova came through a topsy-turvy encounter 6-2 4-6 6-0 to move into the second round on Tuesday.

Sevastova broke her compatriot seven times to advance and will face Laura Siegemund in the last 16.

"I don't think it was a nice feeling for us both," world number 13 Sevastova said of facing the 2017 French Open champion. "At the end of the day, you just concentrate on yourself.

"It's Stuttgart, it's the first match, you play like it's any other match - you try. It's hard, but that's the thing that I did."

Sixth seed Kiki Bertens was a 7-5 6-2 winner over Anna-Lena Friedsam, while Daria Kasatkina defeated Elise Mertens 7-6 (10-8) 7-5 on a day that saw Simona Halep withdraw due to a hip injury.

Andrea Petkovic and Greet Minnen also avoided early exits on day two of the tournament. 

Top seed Suarez Navarro fell at the first hurdle in Istanbul, losing 6-4 7-5 in all-Spanish encounter with Arruabarrena.

The 30-year-old was by no means the only seed to bow out, with Katerina Siniakova beaten by Elena Rybakina after Maria Sakkari and Viktoria Kuzmova were also defeated.

Simona Halep has been forced to withdraw from the Stuttgart Open with a hip injury suffered in Romania's Fed Cup semi-final defeat to France.

World number two Halep beat Caroline Garcia in their rubber on Sunday but picked up an issue during a fall, despite then featuring alongside Monica Niculescu in the deciding doubles match.

The problem will now see the defending French Open champion put her start to the clay-court season on hold.

Halep says she does not wish to play until she has fully returned to fitness, having dealt with back injuries at the end of 2018 that saw her miss the WTA Finals.

"It happened against Garcia in the first set, when I fell down," she said, explaining her decision to miss this week's tournament. "I felt pain in the hip.

"If I'm not 100 per cent, I don't want to step on the court. I'm also exhausted mentally because I gave my everything in that tie.

"It feels bad because I gave everything. I've been very sad for the last two days. I've been through these moments many times, but I just need to relax and recover."

Halep is confident she will recuperate in time to play the Madrid Open and Internazionali d'Italia at the start of May before her Roland Garros defence later in the month.

"I stopped because there's a two-week break, so it's enough time to recover," she added. "I just want to go home and relax myself."

Her absence in Stuttgart opens the door for Petra Kvitova to seize the number one ranking from Naomi Osaka if the Japanese loses her first match. Kvitova would then have to claim the title.

Petra Martic came from a set down to beat Tamara Zidansek in the first round of the Istanbul Cup on Monday.

Martic started her clay-court season with a run to the semi-finals in Charleston, but was in danger of bowing out on day one in Turkey.

The sixth seed stormed back to beat the 21-year-old Zidansek, though, winning 3-6 6-1 6-3 to set up a second-round encounter with Ana Bogdan or Kirsten Flipkens.

Martic had a first-serve percentage of only 57, but broke twice in both the second and final sets to advance.

Rebecca Peterson also had to go the distance to avoid an early exit, beating Pemra Ozgen 6-1 2-6 6-0, but fellow Swede Johanna Larsson went down 7-6 (8-6) 4-6 6-3 to Margarita Gasparyan.

Caroline Garcia and Kristina Mladenovic put their doubles differences aside to send France through to the Fed Cup final, with world number two Simona Halep unable to inspire Romania to victory in the deciding match.

A fifth rubber was needed for the semi-final after both nations won one singles matches each on Sunday, and Halep stepped up to play her first Fed Cup doubles match in two years due to an injury to Irina-Camelia Begu.

Halep and her partner Monica Niculescu won the first set but Garcia and Mladenovic, doubles winners at the 2016 French Open before an acrimonious split, fought back to seal a 5-7 6-3 7 6-4 success in their first match together in two and a half years.

France, into their sixth final and seeking their first Fed Cup title since 2003, will now travel to Australia after they also won 3-2, against Belarus, earlier on Sunday.

Halep, who had beaten Mladenovic in straight sets in the first singles rubber on Saturday, restored Romania's lead in the tie when she prevailed against Garcia 6-7 (6-8) 6-3 6-4 in Sunday's first match.

Yet a decider was needed when Pauline Parmentier won for the first time in five Fed Cup matches, emerging victorious 6-3 2-6 6-2 against Begu, who injured her right ankle and was unable to take part in the doubles.

That meant Halep was forced into action against the French duo, who have a frosty relationship following a row three years ago when Mladenovic accused Garcia of lacking "courage or human values" over the manner of their split.

Yet the two reprised their doubles partnership on Sunday and Halep's double-fault when her opponents had break point at 4-4 in the decider proved costly as Garcia served out to clinch the match before embracing Mladenovic.

Simona Halep was in fine form for Romania as she beat Kristina Mladenovic in straight sets, but France fought back to draw level at 1-1 in the Fed Cup semi-finals.

France captain Julien Benneteau predicted Halep might be the decisive factor in the meeting between the number four and five teams in the Fed Cup Rankings, and that proved to be the case in the opening match on Saturday as the world number two cruised to a 6-3 6-1 victory.

It took Halep one hour and 40 minutes to dispatch Mladenovic – who this week added Naomi Osaka's former coach Sascha Bajin to her team – in the first rubber, although Romania's lead was cut when Caroline Garcia overcame Mihaela Buzarnescu 6-3 6-3.

Aiming to propel Romania into their first Fed Cup final, Halep dropped just four games and broke Mladenovic five times at Kindarena.

Mladenovic did well to offer some resistance late in the opening set before breaking Halep's serve at the start of the second, but the 2018 French Open winner swiftly regained control to ease to victory.

Fortunately for two-time champions France, world number 21 Garcia restored parity, winning five break points over the course one hour and 26 minutes against with Buzarnescu, leaving the tie finely balanced heading into Sunday.

Garcia and Halep get things started, before Mladenovic takes on Buzarnescu in the final singles rubber.

Ashleigh Barty overcame Victoria Azarenka in straight sets to leave the Fed Cup semi-final between Australia and Belarus tantalisingly poised at 1-1.

World number nine Barty needed an hour and 41 minutes to see off two-time major champion Azarenka 7-6 (7-2) 6-3, restoring parity after Aryna Sabalenka outlasted Sam Stosur 7-5 5-7 6-3 in the opening match in Brisbane.

The results set up an exciting start to Sunday's action, which begins with Barty - who has won her last 12 Fed Cup rubbers - and Sabalenka battling it out on Pat Rafter Arena.

Barty twice recovered from breaks of serve in the opening set to stay level and produced a spectacular recovery from 0-40 to hold in game 11.

The Australian won seven points in succession to take the tie-break and she claimed three games against serve in the second to inflict a first Fed Cup defeat on her Miami Open doubles partner since 2010.

Sabalenka fired 37 winners past Stosur en route to winning the first rubber, though she passed up four set points before sealing an error-strewn opener.

Stosur struggled on her first serve but secured five breaks in the second set – just one more than Sabalenka – to force a decider, which she sealed with her third match point.

Maria Sharapova's return to the WTA Tour has been put on hold after she withdrew from next week's Stuttgart Open.

The Russian has not played competitively since a last-32 win over Daria Gavrilova in St Petersburg in January – a triumph which preceded her pulling out of that tournament due to a shoulder injury.

Sharapova was scheduled to play in Germany, where she is a brand ambassador for the tournament's sponsor Porsche, but the five-time grand slam winner will sit out to continue her recovery.

"To all my amazing fans in Germany that travel to see me play in Stuttgart each year, I am really sorry to inform you that I have just ran out of time to be ready to play in Stuttgart," read a statement from Sharapova - a three-time winner in Stuttgart.

"I am making very good progress but just not ready to compete at the highest level."

Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber will not feature for Germany in this weekend's Fed Cup after being struck down with flu.

Germany had hoped to call on the world number five for the play-off against Latvia as they look to preserve their World Group place – Jens Gerlach's team having lost 4-0 to Belarus in the quarter-finals.

However, the German Tennis Federation confirmed Kerber will not fly with the team to Riga due to illness.

"I am disappointed and sad that I have to cancel the Fed Cup match against Latvia for health reasons," said Kerber.

"Unfortunately, after a delayed flu, I did not get a medical clearance and had to take a break for the next few days.

"Even though I cannot be there, I am in contact with the team and I am sure that the girls will prevail in the relegation [play-off]."

Kerber will hope the flu does not keep her sidelined for too long as she looks to complete a career Grand Slam at next month's French Open.

We wish you a speedy recovery, @AngeliqueKerber #FedCup https://t.co/ROB83xrLs0

— Fed Cup (@FedCup) April 17, 2019

Naomi Osaka's former coach Sascha Bajin has been hired by Kristina Mladenovic.

Bajin became the first recipient of the WTA Coach of the Year award in 2018 after helping Osaka to her maiden WTA title at Indian Wells and US Open glory in September.

Osaka made it successive grand slam crowns with victory at the Australian Open at the start of 2019, sending her to the top of the world rankings.

However, just over two weeks after triumphing at Melbourne Park, Osaka announced her surprise split from Bajin.

On Monday, Mladenovic, 66th in the WTA rankings, confirmed she would be working with the German.

"I am very excited to announce [to] you my new collaboration with Sascha Bajin. Welcome to the team, coach," the Frenchwoman posted on Twitter.

Mladenovic has a 5-7 record in main-draw Tour-level matches this year, including a first-round exit at the Australian Open and a second-round loss to Osaka at Indian Wells.

American starlet Amanda Anisimova claimed her first WTA Tour singles title with a comeback win over the unseeded Astra Sharma at the Bogota Open.

Sixth seed Anisimova, still just 17 years old, rallied from a set and a break down to triumph 4-6 6-4 6-1 in a gutsy showing.

Sharma's run to the final of the WTA International event had perhaps been the story of the tournament and, for a time, she threatened to complete the week in style.

The world number 138 emerged with the lead from a first set that began with five straight breaks, before seemingly closing on victory midway through a topsy-turvy second when she again held an advantage.

But Anisimova, who three times came through three-set matches en route to Sunday's showpiece, again showed her fighting spirit.

The match was level when errors crept into Sharma's play and the teenager capitalised. Anisimova then took complete control in the decider, racing into a 3-0 lead and closing out a landmark win.

Iga Swiatek's first WTA Tour level final ended in defeat as Polona Hercog lasted the distance in a 6-3 3-6 6-3 victory in the Ladies Open Lugano showpiece.

Teenager Swiatek, last year's Wimbledon junior champion, was playing in just her third main draw this week.

Holding serve proved a tricky task in the first set for the 17-year-old, who was broken in four service games out of five.

It was a decidedly better showing in the second and Hercog was broken three times herself as the match was taken into a third set.

Swiatek had her eyes on the prize when taking a 2-0 lead in the decider, but she would win just one more game as Hercog celebrated a third career WTA title and first in seven years.

Astra Sharma described reaching the final of the Bogota Open as "unreal" after the unheralded Australian stunned former winner Lara Arruabarrena in the last four on Saturday.

Arruabarrena won the WTA International clay-court event in 2012 and was a runner up in each of the last two years.

But she was no match for unseeded 23-year-old Sharma, who sent 32 winners and 10 aces past the Spaniard to win 7-5 6-1 in just over an hour.

"I'm so excited to be in my first final, I'm so happy to be playing so well this week," Sharma said.

"I love Bogota, obviously, it's playing really well this week. I can't believe I'm in the final here, it's unreal.

"The most important thing this week has been keeping myself really good mentally. 

"Staying calm, staying positive, not thinking too much or getting too negative on court. I've just been really solid and consistent, point by point."

Awaiting Sharma in the final will be sixth seed Amanda Anisimova, who came from a set down to beat Brazilian qualifier Beatriz Haddad Maia 4-6 7-6 (7-2) 6-2.

"It was another super tough match again, three sets," American Anisimova said after reaching the second final of her career. 

"I'm just really happy with how I was playing and rising to each challenge. I'm really happy that I won."

Teenage outsider Iga Swiatek will face Polona Hercog in her first WTA Tour final after a straight-sets demolition of Kristyna Pliskova at the Ladies Open Lugano.

The 17-year-old Pole needed just 54 minutes to break new ground, thrashing Pliskova 6-0 6-1 on Saturday.

Swiatek was near flawless, claiming the first nine games of a one-sided semi-final and hitting 28 winners to only 13 unforced errors to leave Pliskova shell-shocked.

The junior Wimbledon champion said: "I feel great. I'm quite surprised that I'm in the final, because that was my first tournament that I played [directly] in the main draw, but I'm really happy that I made it.

"I was believing in myself, and I hope tomorrow will be a great match also."

Hercog beat Fiona Ferro 7-5 6-4 to reach her first singles final for almost a year.

The 28-year-old Slovenian has not won a title since 2012 but will have a great opportunity to end that drought on Sunday after grasping all six break-point opportunities.

Teenager and sixth seed Amanda Anisimova reached the Bogota Open semi-finals, while Astra Sharma set up a showdown with former champion Lara Arruabarrena.

American Anisimova won the battle of the 17-year-olds in Bogota, where she outlasted wildcard Maria Camila Osorio Serrano 6-2 1-6 6-3 on Friday.

World number 438 Osorio Serrano was a menace throughout, however, Anisimova managed to prevail thanks to 32 winners after almost two hours on the Colombian clay.

Despite tallying 55 unforced errors – nearly double the amount of Osorio Serrano – Anisimova saved 13 of the Colombian's 17 break points.

Standing in the way of Anisimova and the final is Brazilian qualifier Beatriz Haddad Maia, who stunned seventh seed Sara Sorribes Tormo 6-7 (6-8) 6-2 6-3.

"I've been playing well here, I'm going to keep doing what I was doing, and we’ll see how it goes," Anisimova said.

Australian Sharma moved through to her first WTA semi-final thanks to a 6-1 7-5 victory against former world number five and 2012 French Open runner-up Sara Errani.

Next up for Sharma is 2012 champion and 11th seed Arruabarrena, who beat fifth seed Tamara Zidansek 6-4 6-2.

 

Svetlana Kuznetsova's comeback tournament came to an end in a fiercely competitive three-set encounter with Kristyna Pliskova in the Ladies Open Lugano quarter-finals.

Two-time grand slam winner Kuznetsova, playing her first tournament since September following a knee injury, went the distance in winning efforts in the first two rounds.

But the third time was not a charm on this occasion as Pliskova fought back to win 4-6 6-3 7-5 in a match lasting over two hours to make a first semi-final since a run to the final in Prague two years ago.

There were 20 break points in an opener where holding serve proved tricky, with Kuznetsova's crucial third break helping her take the first set.

A second set of high quality followed. The error count dropped and there was just one break-point chance that Pliskova converted when Kuznetsova netted in game four.

Pliskova saved five break points in a crucial second game of the decider and broke in the next as Kuznetsova appeared to be tiring.

Kuznetsova rallied to level at 4-4 but Pliskova held her composure to quickly break again before serving out for the match.

Awaiting her in the last four is Wimbledon junior champion Iga Swiatek, who came from a set and a break down in both the second and third to defeat Vera Lapko 4-6 6-4 6-1.

On the other side of the draw, Fiona Ferro will face Polona Hercog after respective wins against Stefanie Voegele and Veronika Kudermetova.

Page 1 of 44
© 2018 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.