Anne Keothavong bemoans draw after Pennetta defeat

Kieran Beckles
By Kieran Beckles
Anne Keothavong

Keothavong lost to Flavia Pennetta in straight sets

The British contingent suffered an early blow on day one of the French Open after Anne Keothavong lost in straight sets to Italy’s Flavia Pennetta.

The 14th seed easily disposed of the 26-year-old Brit with a comprehensive 6-2 6-2 victory.

“It was a tough draw against Flavia,” said Keothavong afterwards. “She’s a tough opponent and she’s done well here in the past. I think she had to play well against me to win the way she did today.”

It is now up to Elena Baltacha and Katie O’Brien to fly the British flag and both are in action on day two. Baltacha faces world No.8 Anastasia Rodionova while O’Brien will hope to fight past American Jilly Craybas.

Reigning champion Svetlana Kuznetsova progressed into the second round safely after the Russian dismissed 21-year-old Sorana Cirstea with relative ease. Kuznetsova will now face Germany’s Andrea Petkovic in the next round.

When questions were raised about her erratic recent form, the defending champion remarked: “I have not been showing as good results as I would like to, but I knew this moment has to pass because I deserve better.”

Elsewhere, Venus Williams struggled past the experienced Patty Schynder with the American winning in straight sets against her Swiss opponent, despite dropping her serve on three occasions.

And the French 15th seed, Aravane Rezai, confidently disposed of Heidi el Tabakh from Canada. The home favourite made easy work of her match winning 6-1 6-1.

Nadia Petrova and Maria Kirilenko enjoyed comfortable victories overcoming China’s Zhang Shuai and Croatian Karolina Sprem respectively.

British men’s No.1, Andy Murray, takes on Frenchman Richard Gasquet today.

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