Serena Williams beats Elena Vesnina 6-3, 6-1. PHOTO/Jasper Juinen/Getty Images
Serena Williams beat Elena Vesnina 6-3, 6-1 to reach the Madrid Open’s second round, while sister Venus lost 6-4, 6-1 to Angelique Kerber on Monday.
The ninth-seeded Williams had 13 aces and 40 winners against Vesnina, who was struggling with her game on the slippery blue clay court. The Russian lost her balance in the sixth game and set up a break point for Williams, who pulled ahead to lead 4-2.
Williams’ ninth ace of the match provided a set point for the ninth-ranked American to take the first set and wrap up the match against the 68th-ranked Russian in just over an hour.
“I’m feeling good but I wasn’t thrilled,” said Williams, who will face Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia. “This is my first tournament in Europe so hopefully I will just keep my good form and just keep going,” she added.
Venus Williams’ third tournament since being sidelined by illness is over after being broken six times by the 12th-seeded German. The seven-time major champion reached the quarterfinals at Miami and Charleston, S.C., earlier this season.
Fifth-seeded Samantha Stosur rallied to beat Christina McHale 2-6, 6-4, 6-0 to reach the third round, as did French Open champion Li Na after winning 6-3, 6-1 against Silvia Soler-Espinosa.
Petra Cetkovska also advanced, beating Lourdes Dominguez Lino 6-4, 7-5.