ISTANBUL, Turkey, May 21 (UPI) -- Alona Bondarenko
dropped just one game in notching a first-round win at the $200,000 Istanbul Cup tennis tournament in Turkey.
Bondarenko played better than her No. 5 seeding in sweeping out Pemra Ozgen 6-1, 6-0. She was the runner-up to Justine Henin in the recent tournament in Warsaw and is considered a rising star on the circuit.
Also Monday, No. 7 Agnieszka Radwanska bested Ekaterina Bychkova 7-5, 7-5. Other first-round winners included Tsvetana Pironkova, Romina Oprandi, Aravane Rezai and Jelena Kostanic Tosic.
Maria Sharapova, who hasn't played since late March because of a series of injuries, is seeded first this week. She and second-seeded Elena Dementieva were given first-round byes at Istanbul.
The winner of the clay-court tournament will receive $28,180.
© 2007 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.