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Venus Williams wins WTA opener in Dubai

Feb. 17, 2014 at 1:02 PM
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DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, Feb. 17 (UPI) -- Venus Williams posted a straight-set win Monday in first-round play of the WTA's Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships.

Williams defeated Elena Vesnina 6-2, 6-2 in just more than an hour. Williams fired off 10 aces and faced only one break point on the day. She ended up winning 70 percent of the points on serve, losing 15 points over nine games serving.

Ekaterina Makarova outlasted Alisa Kleybanova 6-4, 6-7 (3-7), 6-4 in the only match Monday that went three sets. Makarova had 18 break opportunities, finishing off eight of them. She was 2-for-2 in break chances in the third set.

Lucie Safarova beat Sloane Stephens 6-3, 7-5 behind five breaks while Carla Suarez Navarro topped Nadia Petrova 6-3, 6-2, finishing the match with three second-set breaks.

Sorana Cirstea was a 6-4, 6-3 winner over Roberta Vinci. Cirstea took 58 percent of the points on serve and 59 percent when Vinci served. Vinci, ranked 14th in the world, fell to 0-6 on the year.

There are seven Top 10 players, including world No. 1 Serena Williams, in the Dubai field this year. Third-seeded Petra Kvitova, who is sixth in the rankings, is the defending champion.

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