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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 19 September 2018

Bellis sets up Muguruza clash: WTA Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships Day 2 updates

Top seed Svitolina awaits China's Wang after her thrashing of Belgian Bertens in the first round. 

Catherine Bellis will face second seed Garbine Muguruza in the second round of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. Karim Sahib / AFP
Catherine Bellis will face second seed Garbine Muguruza in the second round of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships. Karim Sahib / AFP

American wildcard Catherine Bellis was in fine form to defeat Elise Mertens 6-3, 6-3 in the first round of the WTA Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Tuesday.

Bellis, the world No 41, required 75 minutes to beat her Belgian opponent and set up a second round meeting with second seed Garbine Muguruza.

After dropping her serve in the opening game, Bellis came roaring back, winning the next four games to take command of the first set. She didn't face another break point before closing out the set to love.

Bellis, 18, started the second set much the same way she ended the first, breaking Mertens to love, and although she gave the break straight back to the Belgian, she soon took control after breaking in the fifth game. A second break when leading 5-3 ensured Bellis advanced to the second round.

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Read more:

WTA Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships: Order of play - Day 2

Petra Kvitova 'really disappointed' after withdrawing from Dubai Tennis Championships

Johanna Konta victorious on debut at Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships

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Wang thrashes Bertens

China's Qiang Wang wasted little time booking her place in the second round, thrashing Belgium's Kiki Bertens 6-3, 6-0 in 57 minutes.

Wang, a lucky loser in Dubai, came flying out of the blocks, breaking the Bertens serve in the second game. She handed the break back to the Belgian but was again in the ascendancy after claiming her second break in the sixth game.

After serving out the first set to love, Wang refused to take her foot off the gas, claiming three successive breaks of serve in the second set to dismantle Bertens in 25 minutes.

The world No 46 from China will take on defending champion and top seed Elina Svitolina for a place in the third round.

Suarez Navarro outclasses Zhuk

Spanish world No 27 Carla Suarez Navarro proved too strong for Sofya Zhuk, defeating the Russian qualifier 6-2, 6-2 in the first round.

Suarez Navarro broke the Zhuk serve in the first game and never looked back, claiming a second break in the fifth game before serving out the opening set.

An exchange of service breaks at the start of the second set was followed by a further break in favour of Suarez Navarro, who streaked into a 5-2 lead with her third break of the set. The Spaniard then closed out victory on her third match point.

Former world No 5 Suarez Navarro faces third seed Karolina Pliskova in the second round.

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