Kaia Kanepi through to round two at Indian Wells

Kaia Kanepi and others on court at the Haabneeme ITF tennis tournament.
Kaia Kanepi and others on court at the Haabneeme ITF tennis tournament. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

Kaia Kanepi has won her opening round match at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, California, beating US player Robin Montgomery in straight sets, 6:3, 6:3.

Kanepi, nearly 20 years older and who places nearly 300 places above the American in the WTA rankings, at 63rd in the world, took a quick lead in the first set, taking the score to 4:1 in games before Montgomery mounted a fight-back to take the score to 4:3. However, after holding her serve, the Estonian, 36, from Haapsalu, managed to break her 17-year old opponent's serve, to take the set 6:3.

Set two went somewhat more briskly, with Kanepi getting to 3:1 before committing three double faults in the next game and having her service broken

With the scoreline 3:2, Kanepi broke in the next game and then raced through her own service in the following game, not dropping a point.

While Montgomery held her service again, in game nine, Kanepi came back from a 15:30 deficit to hold her own serve, and take the set 6:3 again, and with it the match.

The entire encounter lasted an hour-and-ten minutes; Kanepi committed nine double faults to Montgomery's eight, while she won 75 percent of break points to her opponent's 38 percent.

Kanepi faces Tokyo Olympic gold medalist Belinda Bencic (Switzerland), ranked 25th in the world, in round two. The pair have met once competitively, at Wimbledon in 2019, when Bencic was victorious.

Top Estonian player Anett Kontaveit had a bye in round one and will face either Kristina Kucova (Slovakia, 77th in the world) and Elena-Gabriela Ruse (Romania, 57th in the world).


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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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