WTA Hua Hin: Dayana Yastremska makes perfect start. Niculescu and Begu win


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WTA Hua Hin: Dayana Yastremska makes perfect start. Niculescu and Begu win

An 18-year-old and the 8th seed Dayana Yastremska is off to a great start at Thailand Open following a 6-0, 6-3 win over a qualifier Arantxa Rus in 53 minutes. One of the youngest and most promising players in the top-100 stormed over her rival to win the opening set in less than 20 minutes, staying on a high level to bring the match home in less than an hour and march towards the second round.

Rus landed 76% of the first serve in although that brought her pretty much nothing, finding no rhythm on either first or second serve and giving the serve away four times from nine chances she gave to Dayana. On the other hand, the Ukrainian had the upper hand from start to finish, losing only 12 points on serve and dominating in every segment to race into a 6-0 lead after giving away only seven points in the opener.

The second set was more competitive than the first and Dayana grabbed a break in game six that pushed her 4-2 up, wasting four match points on the return at 5-3 before sealing the deal with a hold at 15 a few minutes later to march into the second round.

Irina-Camelia Begu needed just four points more than Yastremska to kick off the tournament in a winning style, ousting Evgeniya Rodina 6-2, 6-0 in 57 minutes to join the Ukrainian in the last 16. Both players served at 54% and it was Begu who held the strings of the match in her hands, saving both break points and claiming more than 60% of the return points for five breaks from nine opportunities.

Trailing 2-1 at the start of the match, Irina-Camelia rattled off 11 straight games to leave the rival far behind, playing better and better as the encounter progressed to clinch the triumph and wait for Mandy Minella or Saisai Zheng in the second round.

A former world no. 14 Shuai Peng took down a qualifier Chloe Paquet 6-2, 6-3 in an hour and 15 minutes, playing well behind the first serve to lose serve only twice and delivering some strong returns that left the French girl unarmed.

Chloe made a better start, scoring an early break before Peng claimed six games in a row to complete the opener, controlling the pace with solid groundstrokes from both wings and punishing weak serves of her opponent. Paquet stayed in touch until the seventh game of the second set when she suffered two breaks in a row to hand the win to the Chinese and finish her run in the opening round.

Monica Niculescu and the 3rd seed Su-Wei Hsieh played a grueling match that the Romanian won 6-4, 7-6 in two hours and six minutes, emerging at the top in a roller coaster ride that saw 11 breaks of serve. Neither player couldn't find the rhythm in the first six games, causing six straight breaks before Niculescu earned another one in game nine, holding at 15 a few minutes later for a 6-4.

They traded breaks at the start of the second set and again in games 11 and 12 to set up a tie break that Monica won 7-2, crossing the finish line after more than two hours on the court. First round results:

Mona Barthel (GER) vs Fiona Ferro (FRA) 6-1 1-6 6-4
[WC]Shuai Peng (CHN) vs [Q]Chloe Paquet (FRA) 6-2 6-3
[8]Dayana Yastremska (UKR) vs [Q]Arantxa Rus (NED) 6-0 6-3
Monica Niculescu (ROU) vs [3]Su-Wei Hsieh (TPE) 6-4 7-6(2)
Magda Linette (POL) vs [Q]Priscilla Hon (AUS) 6-1 2-6 6-2
[6]Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS) vs Stefanie Voegele (SUI) 6-1 7-6(6)
Kateryna Kozlova (UKR) vs [Q]Conny Perrin (SUI) 6-4 3-6 6-3
Irina-Camelia Begu (ROU) vs Evgeniya Rodina (RUS) 6-2 6-0