Shapatava takes her chance in Tashkent


Lucky loser Sofia Shapatava made the most of an unexpected opportunity at the Tashkent Open, beating third seed Cagla Buyukakcay in straight sets on Tuesday.

Shapatava was granted late entry into the main draw in Uzbekistan's capital when top seed Johanna Larsson withdrew from the tournament due to a viral illness.

And the Georgian duly produced an upset against Buyukakcay, who sits 137 places above her in the WTA rankings.

A run of five straight games saw Shapatava race through the opener and she was able to wrap up a 6-1 6-4 victory despite an improved showing from her opponent in set two.

Seventh seed Sorana Cirstea joined Buyukakcay in making an early exit, the Romanian going down 7-5 6-2 to former French Open champion Francesca Schiavone.

However, Kirsten Flipkens - the highest-ranked player in the field following Larsson's withdrawal - progressed courtesy of a hard-fought 7-6 (9-7) 6-3 victory over Ana Bogdan.

There were also first-round wins on Tuesday for Lesia Tsurenko, Naomi Broady, Risa Ozaki, Irina Khromacheva, Kristyna Pliskova, Patricia Maria Tig, Ipek Soylu and Kateryna Kozlova, who beat last year's runner-up, Donna Vekic.