Talaja progresses in Bol Ladies Open

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The Independent Online

Forth-seed and Croatia's hope Silvija Tajala advanced to the second round of the $170,000 Croatian Bol Ladies Open today, beating Cristina Torrens-Valero of Spain, 6-3, 6-0.

Paola Suarez of Argentina, seeded seventh, also easily ousted another Spanish player, Nuria Llagostera, 6-2, 6-1.

The two top-seeded players - both from France - Julie Halard-Decugis, the world's No 9, and Sandrine Testud, ranked 11th, had a bye in the first round.

Gala Leon-Garcia of Spain, who defeated her fellow countrywoman Ainoha Goni in the first round 6-3, 6-3, will have a tough job facing the top seed, Halard-Decugis, in the second round.

Second-seeded Testud will take on another Croat hope, Jelena Kostanic. Kostanic advanced to the second round by beating Magdalena Maleeva of Bulgaria, 6-3, 6-0.

Talaja's victory - and an easy one too - is a boost for the 22-year-old player, who after moving swiftly to the 23rd place on the WTA list, recorded mainly losses this year.

While Torrens-Valero started the match with a 2-1 lead, Talaja turned it to 5-2 and then lost only one game till the end of the match.

She said she knew her rival "is not so good with the backhand, so I forced such a play."

In the second round, she will face Slovene Tina Pisnik, who advanced by defeating Patricia Wartusch of Austria, 6-1, 6-0.

Virginie Razzano of France had more trouble with a bumble-bee that annoyed her throughout the match than with Ivana Abramovic of Croatia. The result was 6-2, 6-1.

Also moving to the second round Tuesday were Katarina Srebotnik of Slovenia, Nadeja Ostrovskaya of Belarus and Emmanuelle Gagliardi of Switzerland.

First Round Results

J Kostanic (Cro) bt M Maleeva (Bul) 6-3 6-0, (4) S Talaja (Cro) bt C Torrens-Valera (Spa) 6-3 6-0 N Ostrovskaya (Blr) bt K Boogert (Ned) 6-4 6-4 T Pisnik (Slo) bt P Wartusch (Aut) 6-1 6-0 E Gagliardi (Swi) bt T Krizan (Slo) 6-2 2-6 6-3

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