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Page last updated at 17:54 GMT, Tuesday, 26 August 2008 18:54 UK

Ivanovic survives US Open scare

Ana Ivanovic
Ivanovic is looking for her first US Open title

Top seed Ana Ivanovic had to battle hard before overcoming Vera Dushevina of Russia 6-1 4-6 6-4 in the first round of the US Open.

The French Open champion raced through the opening set, but lost her way after taking a 4-2 lead in the second.

However, she recovered to clinch victory in just over two hours.

She was joined in the second round by former champion Serena Williams, sixth seed Dinara Safina and Venus Williams, who all won in straight sets.

Serena Williams wrapped up a 6-1 6-4 win over Kateryna Bondarenko in just under an hour, Safina beat American Kristie Ahn 6-3 6-4, while Venus Williams overcame Samantha Stosur 6-2 6-3.

Ninth seed Agnieszka Radwanska was also a comfortable winner, beating Yaroslava Shvedova of Russia 6-4 6-2.

But there was disappointment for 11th seed Daniela Hantuchova, who was crushed 6-4 6-2 by German qualifier Anna-Lena Groenefeld.

Ivanovic was playing her first match since being forced to pull out of the Olympics with a thumb injury.

606: DEBATE

"Just to be here and be able to compete is a great achievement," she said. "I could feel in some shots a lack of practice, and even shot selection.

"But my experience and calm helped me, and something I'll have to rely on because I haven't had as good a preparation as I hoped for.

The world number one will face Julie Coin of France in round two.

The Serb has never passed the fourth round at Flushing Meadows but an early defeat this year would leave her ranking under threat.

Jelena Jankovic, Svetlana Kuznetsova, Serena Williams, Elena Dementieva and Safina all have a mathematical chance of becoming world number one if any of them reach the final.

Williams won the title in 1999 and 2002 and is hungry to lift the trophy for a third time.

"I didn't even remember holding up the trophy. I didn't even know I won this tournament, that's how long it's been," said the 26-year-old.

"This tournament I'm feeling great. I'm just feeling confident and I feel like I'm really enjoying myself. I love every moment out there."

Former world number one Amelie Mauresmo beat fellow Frenchwoman Nathalie Dechy 4-6 6-3 6-2 to advance.



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see also
Order of play
23 May 08 |  Tennis
Men's singles draw
26 Aug 11 |  Tennis
Women's singles draw
28 Jan 10 |  Tennis
Tennis on the BBC
19 Jun 08 |  Tennis


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