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Sugiyama cruises at SVW Polo Open

SHANGHAI, Sept. 9 (UPI) -- Second seed Ai Sugiyama of Japan, who is seeking her first title in over four years, got off to a good start Monday in the SVW Polo Open.

Sugiyama breezed to a 6-4, 6-2 victory over countrywoman Saori Obata in the first round of this Tier IV hardcourt event. The 27-year-old Sugiyama has not won a WTA singles title since the Gold Coast in January 1998 and was bounced in the second round of the U.S. Open by Amy Frazier.

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Canada's Vanessa Webb will meet Sugiyama in the second round. Webb had a 6-1, 3-5 lead, when Japan's Rika Fujiwara retired.

China's Jie Zheng also advanced to the second round with a 2-6, 7-6 (7-4), 6-3 victory over compatriot Nan Nan Liu and Japan's Akiko Morigami overcame Australian Amanda Grahame, 2-6, 6-2, 6-4.

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