Cluj-Napoca | Dart breezes past Dodin, Bondar next

British No 2 Harriet Dart breezed into the 2nd-round of the Transylvania Open by Verdino in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, on Tuesday with an impressive win over lucky loser Oceane Dodin.

Following the withdrawal of top seed Barbora Krejcikova on Sunday, the reshuffled draw paired Dart and Dodin in the opening round, and the British World No 90 took just over an hour to post a dominant 6-2 6-0 win against the Frenchwoman, whose rash of double-faults essentially cost her the contest.

Dart brought up the first break point of the match and, despite Dodin’s physically-imposing 6ft frame and powerful drive, the first of mnay inopportune double-faults saw the Brit go 3-1 up.

Dodin had 3 chances to break back in the 5th game, causing Dart to toss her racket in frustration, but she failed to take any of them and went 1-4 down after netting a forehand.

Back-to-back double-faults from Dodin handed Dart the first set after 35 minutes, and the 25-year-old also saw an early opportunity to break in the second go begging before being served a bagel.

Dart broke for 2-0 and 4-0 leads, thanks to more French double-faults, and she then held to move a game away from a place in the 2nd-round as Dodin coughed up 2 more.

A stunning forehand return from Dart brought up 2 match points, but the first was whisked away as Dodin’s powerful forehand found the line, and the Brit squandered her second chance to take the contest on the Dodin serve.

A 3rd turned into another gift as Dodin double-faulted for the 11th time in the match, and Dart set up a 2nd-round clash with Hungarian 8th seed Anna Bondar.

Dart proved the more solid in the clutch moments in her opener, but Bondar has had more indoor hard mileage this season.

Although most of Bondar’s successes have come on clay courts this year, with 5 semi-finals, a run to the Lyon quarter-final earlier is her best hard court result.

Wild card Elena-Gabriela Ruse came from a set down to defeat lucky loser Harmony Tan in the first round of the Transylvania Open by Verdino on Tuesday

Meanwhile, Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard pulled out of her opening match against 2nd-seeded Anhelina Kalinina because of a right hip injury, with the score standing at 6-3 in the Ukrainian’s favour.

Bouchard received a wild-card into the qualifying of the  WTA 250 event, but was then awarded a place in the main draw as a result of the re-shuffle.

“We are pleased about the presence of Eugenie Bouchard at the Transylvania Open, for she is an attraction at any tournament she attends,” organisers said. “Genie was supposed to have a wild card on the qualifiers, but we decided to switch and give her one on the main draw.”

Elsewhere, two of the three highest-ranked players with one-handed backhands saw Viktorija Golubic from Switzerland edge past France’s Diane Parry in two tight sets.

Golubic saved 2 set points in the second set before advancing, 7-5 7-6(6), after 2 hours and 20 minutes.

Wild-card Elena-Gabriela Ruse came from a set down to defeat lucky loser Harmony Tan from France, 6-7(5) 6-2 6-3, after two hours and 34 minutes.

The Romanian, who qualified, was the only home player to advance to the 2nd-round out of the four who started in the main draw, and she will now face 21-year old Xiyu Wang from China, ranked 59 and the 7th seed, who defeated Jaqueline Cristian on Tuesday, 6-3 6-3.

Viktorija Golubic edged past Diane Parry in two tight sets in Romania



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