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Last Updated: Wednesday, 13 June 2007, 16:26 GMT 17:26 UK
Sharapova wins grass-court opener
Maria Sharpova
Sharapova had little difficulty with the American qualifier
Maria Sharapova found her feet quickly on grass with a 6-4 6-0 win over American qualifier Lilia Osterloh in the DFS Classic in Birmingham.

The Russian experienced hiccups at the start and finish of the first set but easily disposed of an opponent 118 places below her in the world rankings.

World number three Jelena Jankovic began her Wimbledon build-up by beating Bulgarian Tsvetana Pironkova 6-4 6-1.

But Britain's last survivor Naomi Cavaday lost 6-3 6-1 to Marion Bartoli.

The Kent teenager had earned a shock win over world number 61 Vasilisa Bardina in the first round but never looked likely to repeat her victory.

Although she broke the world number 20 in the second game she struggled on her serve and bowed out in just 68 minutes.

"There is a huge gap between players 16 to 20 in the world and those around the top 60," she said.

"She was obviously a lot tougher than Bardina and I didn't perform to my best but there are a lot of positives I can take into my next couple of tournaments."

Cavaday has a wildcard for Wimbledon and added: "I can't see anybody making it deep into the second week but in general British women's tennis is definitely going in the right direction."

I started playing clay-court tennis

Maria Sharapova

Sharapova, whose next opponent on Thursday is 16-year-old Tamira Paszek, had a shaky start in her first grasscourt match of the season.

"I started playing clay-court tennis," she said. "It was kind of interesting to find myself three break points down. It's different practising to playing a match.

"I needed to adapt as soon as possible and, once I got my first big hit, it was all right. You can't expect to be hitting winners right, left and centre straight away."



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