WTA Acapulco: Victoria Azarenka shines against Collins. Stephens marches on

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WTA Acapulco: Victoria Azarenka shines against Collins. Stephens marches on

The top seed and 2016 champion Sloane Stephens is off to a great start in Acapulco, defeating Pauline Parmentier 6-2, 6-2 in 69 minutes for the fourth win in five encounters against the French rival. The American did lose serve twice although her return game was just too good today, winning 60% of the points in Parmentier's games to create 12 chances and convert six of those, controlling the pace from start to finish.

They traded breaks in the first two games of the match before Sloane shifted into a higher gear, securing another one at 4-2 to cement the opener with a hold at love in game nine, winning 12 of the last 15 points for a strong start.

The American raced into a 4-0 lead in set number two, securing another break at 4-2 and fending off a break point in the eighth game to book the place in the second round. In the battle of the qualifiers, 2014 runner-up Christina McHale ousted Ysaline Bonaventure 6-3, 1-6, 6-2 in an hour and 51 minutes, bouncing back after a poor second set to break Ysaline twice in the decider and make a winning start.

The 17-year-old Amanda Anisimova was forced to retire while leading 4-3 versus Varvara Flink, saving four break points before deciding to retire after not feeling well.
The 8th seed Johanna Konta delivered a solid 6-3, 6-2 triumph over Laura Siegemund in 69 minutes, losing just ten points on serve and never facing a break point.

The German was unable to follow that pace, giving serve away three times and hitting the exit door and propelling Konta into the last 16. The 7th seed Saisai Zheng had to dig deep against the world no. 242 Renata Zarazua, scoring a 3-6, 7-5, 6-4 win to avoid the setback, crossing the finish line with a late break in the deciding set.

An 18-year-old Canadian Bianca Andreescu claimed a 6-1, 6-3 victory over Jil Teichmann in an hour and 22 minutes, dominating in the crucial points and saving eight out of nine break points to limit the damage in her games.

The Swiss lost more than half of the points behind the initial shot and she had to give serve away five times, never standing a chance against the upcoming youngster who already had noticeable results in 2019. The 4th seed Mihaela Buzarnescu took down Daria Gavrilova 6-4, 6-2 in less than an hour and a half, scoring six breaks from as many chances and keeping things under control all the time.

A former world no. 1 Victoria Azarenka asked for a wild card and she used it with both hands, toppling the 2nd seed Danielle Collins 6-1, 6-2 in just 71 minutes. The Belarusian fended off four out of five break points and dominated on the return, breaking the Australian Open semi-finalist six times from seven opportunities to march towards the finish line, thrilled with the way she played.

Vika kicked off the match in strong fashion, finding her range and breaking Danielle in games one and three before ensuring the opener with another break in game seven. There was nothing the American could do to change the course of the match, suffering a break in the eighth game of the second set to push Azarenka into the last 16.