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tennisIlove09
May 8th, 2003, 05:42 AM
Clijsters Cruises Through on German Clay
Wed May 7, 2003 01:42 PM ET
By Patrick Vignal
BERLIN (Reuters) - Top seed Kim Clijsters started her campaign to regain the world number two ranking with a 6-4, 6-2 win over France's Emilie Loit in her first match at the German Open on Wednesday.

The Belgian, warming up in Berlin for the French Open starting on May 26, returned to action after a week off which made her lose the number two spot to Venus Williams.

Neither Williams sister is in the German capital with Venus nursing the stomach injury which made her pull out in the third set of the Warsaw Cup final against France's Amelie Mauresmo on Sunday and world number one Serena taking a break.

Clijsters, who had a bye into the second round like all top eight seeds, will be back at number two if she wins here and might if she reaches the final, depending on who she faces.

The 19-year-old, who is accompanied in Berlin by her boyfriend, world number two Lleyton Hewitt, goes on to meet Colombia's Fabiola Zuluaga in the third round.

Zuluaga knocked out American Meghann Shaughnessy 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 on Wednesday. Shaughnessy, the 14th seed, was one of two seeded players to fall on the third day of the $1.2 million clay court tournament.

Anastasia Myskina, seeded ninth, was also sent packing, by fellow Russian Vera Zvonareva, who crushed her 6-1, 6-2.

EASY FOR CAPRIATI Jennifer Capriati, the fourth seed, cruised through with a comfortable 6-4, 6-4 win over Italy's Francesca Schiavone in her first match of the season on the red clay of Europe.

The 2001 French Open champion, looking forward to the Paris event, needed 89 minutes to beat Schiavone

The 27-year-old American now plays France's Nathalie Dechy who also survived the second round easily, beating Slovenia's Maja Matevzic 6-4, 6-2.

"It was a good start," said Capriati, making her eighth appearance in Berlin. "I rallied well, I was patient on the long points and aggressive at the right moments."

Capriati has fond memories of the German Open, where she reached the semifinals as a bubbly 15-year-old in 1991.

Her promising career was later derailed when she lost interest in the sport and dabbled in drugs.

She was staging a remarkable comeback which eventually took her to the number one spot when she reached the final in 2001, losing to Mauresmo.

Fifth seed Mauresmo also started the tournament with a comfortable win, beating Croatia's Jelena Kostanic 6-1, 6-4 after underlining her determination by fighting back from 3-0 down in the second set.

skanky~skanketta
May 8th, 2003, 07:04 AM
i really hope kim has an easy time with fabiola. i mean, they've played twice and both have been pretty tough. and zuluaga is good on clay.GO KIM!GO VERA!GO JUSTINE!

~|Naomi|~
May 8th, 2003, 10:51 AM
i really hope kim has an easy time with fabiola. i mean, they've played twice and both have been pretty tough. and zuluaga is good on clay.GO KIM!GO VERA!GO JUSTINE!

You thought her first match with Zuluaga was tough :confused: Kim won 6-1 6-1 the first time they played, and although IW was close sets she still did it in straight sets. But it will be a different story in Berlin, as it's on clay