Elise Mertens beats Peyton Stearns and meets Emma Navarro in the second round

© EPA-EFE

Elise Mertens (WTA 25) qualified for the second round (sixteenth finals) of the WTA1,000 tournament in the Qatari capital Doha on Monday.

Mertens defeated the American Peyton Stearns (WTA 65) in the first round in two sets: 6-2 and 6-3. The match lasted 1 hour and 21 minutes. Stearns lost her first serve in the first set and was unable to overcome the deficit. The Limburg native also immediately took two serves from Stearns in the second set and ran out to 4-0. The American came back to 4-3, but afterwards Mertens had enough and won the set and match.

American sixteenth seed Emma Navarro (WTA 23) awaits in the next round. She defeated the Italian Jasmine Paolini (WTA 24) in two sets: 6-3 and 7-5.

The 28-year-old Mertens also doubles in Doha, where she forms a tandem with Hsieh Su-wei. The Limburg native won the doubles tournament at the Australian Open this year alongside the Taiwanese and is the top seed in Qatar. They are free in the first doubles round.

Greet Minnen (WTA 85) is also in Doha. The Kempen qualified for the main table through the qualifications and defeated the German Tatjana Maria (WTA 50) twice 6-1 in the first round on Sunday. In the second round, Czech sixth seed Marketa Vondrousova (WTA 8) awaits, who was free in the first round.

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