GAIBA, Italy (AP)Italian player Sara Errani upset second-seeded Madison Brengle in the opening round of the Veneto Open on Tuesday, beating the American 6-2, 3-6, 7-5.
The 35-year-old Errani, who had a career-high ranking of No. 5 but is now 213th, double-faulted on her first match point and wasted another three in her next service game before winning with a lob.
Errani will next face Lucrezia Stefanini, who beat Vitalia Diatchenko 4-6, 7-6 (4), 6-2.
Top-seeded Alison Van Uytvanck of Belgium advanced by beating Italian wild-card entry Cristiana Ferrando 6-4, 6-1.
Fourth-seeded Claire Liu, fifth-seeded Arantxa Rus and sixth-seeded Diane Parry also advanced. Liu beat Rebeka Masarova 4-6, 6-2, 6-3, Rus defeated Anna Blinkova 6-2, 4-6, 6-1, and Parry eliminated Lisa Pigato 6-4,-6-1.
The Veneto Open is taking place in Gaiba, a town of less than 1,000 inhabitants – making it the smallest town in the world to host a WTA tournament.
It is the first WTA tournament played on natural grass in Italy and organizers are using former soccer fields for the courts. The host tennis club has been nicknamed ”Gaibledon” in homage to Wimbledon.
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