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Keys advances; Zvonareva, McHale exit Indian Wells

7:04 AM, Mar 6, 2014   |    comments
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Indian Wells, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - American Madison Keys cruised into the second round Wednesday, while former champion Vera Zvonareva and Acapulco runner-up Christina McHale both came up first-round losers at the $5.9 million BNP Paribas Open tennis event.

Keys sailed to a 6-2, 6-1 victory over Bulgaria's Tsvetana Pironkova in just under 54 minutes on the hardcourts at Indian Wells Tennis Garden.

Chinese Peng Shuai dismissed the two-time Grand Slam runner-up and one-time world No. 2 Zvonareva, 4-6, 6-0, 7-5. The wild card Zvonareva was the Indian Wells champ back in 2009.

Australian qualifier Casey Dellacqua sent the American McHale packing with a 7-6 (7-4), 6-4 triumph. The 21-year-old McHale made her first-ever WTA final last week in Acapulco, where she lost to Dominika Cibulkova.

Meanwhile, Spaniard Silvia Soler-Espinosa was tied with former top-10 star Nadia Petrova 1-1 in the first set when the oft-injured Russian wild card retired on Day 1.

American Lauren Davis handled qualifier Yung-Jan Chan of Taipei 6-4, 6-3, while American wild card Shelby Rogers topped Czech Petra Cetkovska 6-0, 6-4, and Serbian Bojana Jovanovski dismissed American Alison Riske 3-6, 6-3, 6-3. Davis is rewarded with a second-round match against former world No. 1 Victoria Azarenka.

American Varvara Lepchenko moved on with a straight-set victory, while Canadian qualifier Sharon Fichman needed all three sets to take down Israel's Shahar Peer 4-6, 6-3, 6-4.

Japan's Kurumi Nara, Kazakhstan's Yaroslava Shvedova, France's Kristina Mladenovic and Great Britain's Heather Watson each advanced, while Belgian Yanina Wickmayer, German Annika Beck and Austrian Yvonne Meusburger also earned first-round wins on Wednesday.

This week's top seeds are Australian Open champ Li Na, Agnieszka Radwanska, the U.S. Open runner-up Azarenka, and French Open runner-up and reigning Indian Wells titlist Maria Sharapova, who topped 2011 champion and two-time Indian Wells runner-up Caroline Wozniacki in last year's finale. Sharapova also won this event in 2006 and was the runner-up to Azarenka in 2012.

The Sports Network

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