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Last Updated: Tuesday, 25 May, 2004, 15:20 GMT 16:20 UK
Williams sisters go through
Serena Williams
Serena and Venus Williams both enjoyed straight-sets wins in the first round of the French Open.

Second seed Serena eased past Iveta Benesova of the Czech Republic 6-2 6-2 in 66 minutes.

Fourth seed Venus was less convincing, dropping the first two games before rattling off 10 in a row to overcome Tamarine Tanusugarn 6-2 6-4.

Jennifer Capriati had a real battle against world number 164 Yulia Beygelzimer, but won 6-2 4-6 6-4.

Serena received a warm reception at Roland Garros, a year after she was booed by the crowd during her semi-final exit to Justine Henin-Hardenne.

"I wanted to make a connection with the crowd - but I always do," she said.

"I made a lot of mistakes today - I was a little nervous and just happy to get that one under my belt and get into the next round."

The American will meet Russia's Maria Kirilenko in the next round.

Venus was in action for the first time since she twisted her ankle on 9 May.

Asked if she was still hampered by the injury, she replied: "If I was, I wouldn't let on."

The fourth seed added: "I was a little stressed out too starting out and got a slow start - but so far, so good."

Meanwhile, former world number five Daniela Hantuchova suffered defeat to Shinobu Asagoe.

Hantuchova, now ranked 50th, has won only seven matches this year as she struggles to rediscover the form which saw her reach the top 10 in 2002.

Former champion Mary Pierce avoided an upset against Claudine Schaul.

Pierce advanced 6-2 6-3 against 41st-ranked Schaul, who shocked Lindsay Davenport to win her first title in Strasbourg last weekend.

The 2000 French Open winner next meets Spain's Gala Leon Garcia who beat Laura Granville of the United States 6-4 6-1.


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