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Julie Pullin
"I got off to a great start and that helped me relax"
 real 28k

Monday, 17 January, 2000, 12:40 GMT
Pullin flies British flag

Lindsay Davenport Lindsay Davenport: Safely into round two


Julie Pullin acheieved her first ever win in a Grand Slam tournament with a straight sets romp past Jane Chi in the Australian Open.

The British qualifier beat her American opponent 6-1 6-3 in the first round in Melbourne.


Julie Pullin Best of British: Julie Pullin
Pullin took the first five games off Chi, at 107th in the world ranked 67 places above her, and never looked back, winning in just 57 minutes.

The 24-year-old had previously suffered four first round defeats at Wimbledon and had failed to qualify for the Australian, French and US Opens.

So the maiden Grand Slam success was particularly sweet for Pullin, who was British champion two years ago.

"It feels brilliant," said Pullin. "She was struggling and had a slight injury, but I did all I could ask for.

"My ambition for quite a while has been to get in the top 100. The women's game in Britain needs somebody to break through, and it would be nice if it was me."

Huber humbled

Elsewhere in the women's draw, Anke Huber became the first seed to go out of the tournament when she lost 6-4 6-4 to Kristie Boogert.


Jennifer Capriati Jennifer Capriati has faced a troubled few years
The German 15th seed, who reached the final four years ago, slumped to defeat in just 68 minutes to her 88th-ranked Dutch opponent.

There were no such troubles for Wimbledon champion Lindsay Davenport, who brushed aside Sarah Pitkowski of France 6-3 6-1.

And the serve-volleyer then admitted the resurfaced courts in Melbourne had worked in her favour.

"It's going to take a little while to get used to. But fast courts are to my advantage and if I can get used to them pretty quick, I think it will help my game a lot here," she said.

Capriati on comeback trail

Fallen-hero Jennifer Capriati continued her comeback with a 6-1 7-6 (7/1) victory over Austrian Barbara Schwartz.


Mary Pierce Poer play: Mary Pierce thunders a backhand
The American, who at the age of 14 in 1990 became the youngest ever seed in a Grand Slam event, said she was pleased to be taken seriously once again following personal problems and two years in the tennis wilderness.

"I feel a little bit more like I'm in the top group now," she said. "I have more confidence, I can walk around with my head a little higher and my shoulders back a bit more."

French fourth seed Mary Pierce beat American qualifier Linda Wild 7-5, 6-3 in the first round.

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See also:
16 Jan 00 |  Tennis
Henman goes through
17 Jan 00 |  Tennis
Australian Open results
14 Jan 00 |  Tennis
Challengers out to topple Hingis
14 Jan 00 |  Tennis
American dream Down Under
15 Jan 00 |  Tennis
British duo through to Open
15 Jan 00 |  Tennis
Mauresmo and Hewitt on a roll

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