Women's titlist exits Estoril Open

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The Independent Online

Defending champion Katarina Srebotnik of Slovenia staged a second-set fightback but lost 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 against Seda Noorlander of the Netherlands in the women's first round of the Estoril Open on Monday.

Srebotnik snared her first professional tour victory here last year, but is now ranked 62nd in the world and was not seeded for the event.

Fourth-seeded French woman Sarah Pitkowski also exited the tournament despite winning the first set, slumping to a 3-6, 6-1, 6-1 defeat against Miroslava Vavrinec of Switzerland.

Seventh-seeded Hungarian Rita Kuti Kis, last year's defeated finalist, ousted Amelie Cocheteux of France 6-1, 6-2, while Bulgarian Lubomira Bacjeva beat Austrian Patricia Wartusch 7-6 (4), 6-2.

Italy's Silvia Farina, seeded fifth, defeated Maria Vento of Venezuela 6-4, 6-4, while Croatia's Jelena Kostanic easily beat Portugal's Angela Cardoso 6-1, 6-2.

In other women's play, Czech player Sandra Kleinova rallied from one set down to take Olga Barabanschikova of Belarus 2-6, 6-4, 7-5.

In the men's event, which was delayed because of rain showers, Argentina's Gaston Gaudio cruised to a 6-3, 6-4 victory over countryman Guillermo Canas, the third time in a year Gaudio has beaten Canas on clay.

Another Argentinian, Juan Ignacio Chela, took to the courts Monday to notch a two-set victory over Portugal's Bernardo Mota.

The Estoril Open, being held through Sunday, is the European tour's first event on clay.

The men's event has $625,000 in prize money, while the women's event has $142,500.

Estoril Open Results

Women's Singles

First Round Seda Noorlander, Netherlands, def. Katarina Srebotnik, Slovenia, 6-3, 3-6, 6-2. Miroslava Vavrinec, Switzerland, def. Sarah Pitkowski (4), France, 3-6, 6-1, 6-1. Lubomira Bacheva, Bulgaria, def. Patricia Wartusch, Austria, 7-6 (4), 6-2. Rita Kuti Kis (7), Hungary, def. Amelie Cocheteux, France, 6-1, 6-2. Silvia Farina (5), Italy, def. Maria Vento, Venezual, 6-4, 6-4. Sandra Kleinova, Czech Republic, def. Olga Barabanschikova, Belarus, 2-6, 6-4, 7-5. Jelena Kostanic, Croatia, def. Angela Cardoso, Portugal, 6-1, 6-2.

Men's Singles

First Round Gaston Gaudio, Argentina, def. Guillermo Canas, Argentina, 6-3, 6-4. Juan Ignacio Chela, Argentina, def. Bernardo Mota, Portugal, 6-3, 6-4.

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