Svetlana Kuznetosva started her title defence at the Porsche tennis Grand Prix with a 6-1, 6-2 demolition of Katarina Srebotnik on Tuesday.
The third-seeded Russian Kuznetsova took 69 minutes in her victory against Slovenia’s Srebotnik, who is 0-5 for the year in a difficult comeback from injuries.
Srebotnik, 29, was sidelined for eight months last year, mainly over Achilles tendon and shoulder problems. With a protected number 20 ranking due to the ailments, she has won only two out of 15 matches played since her return last autumn.
Kuznetsova won the French Open, Stuttgart and Beijing titles last year, but is yet to go beyond the fourth round in 2010.
“I was a little nervous because we have played some tight matches.
The first games were important, then things went my way,” said the 24-year-old winner.
Kuznetsova reeled off five unanswered games to win the first set and also dominated the second for her third win in the fifth match with Srebotnik.
She next runs into China’s Li Na, who overcame Italian Sara Errani 6-1, 6-1 in 55 minutes.
Also on Tuesday, the 2007 winner Justine Henin said she expected no major problems over her finger fracture when she plays on Wednesday against German Julia Goerges.
The former world number one Henin, who came out of retirement this year, broke the left little finger during Fed Cup practice last week.
She played, and lost, a Fed Cup match on the weekend as Belgium beat Estonia.
“The finger feels better and I have gotten used to the tape. It is still a little painful but I am almost 100 per cent,” said the four-time French Open champion.
Keywords: Porsche tennis Grand Prix