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TENNIS > Sharapova wins 6-0, 6-0 in French Open's 1st round

PARIS - The Associated Press

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Maria Sharapova of Russia prepares to serve in her first round match against Alexandra Cadantu of Romania at the French Open tennis tournament in Roland Garros stadium in Paris, Tuesday May 29, 2012. AP photo

Maria Sharapova of Russia prepares to serve in her first round match against Alexandra Cadantu of Romania at the French Open tennis tournament in Roland Garros stadium in Paris, Tuesday May 29, 2012. AP photo

Maria Sharapova was nearly perfect in the first round of the French Open, winning all 12 games to produce a "double bagel." The second-seeded Russian easily beat Alexandra Cadantu of Romania 6-0, 6-0 Tuesday, needing just 48 minutes to advance to the second round. She finished the match with 18 winners, while Cadantu had zero, but had to save three break points.

"No matter how good or bad they're playing, you still have to win that match," Sharapova said. "It's always about who takes their chances." Sharapova, who lost in this year's Australian Open final, is looking to complete a career Grand Slam by winning the title at Roland Garros.

Earlier, Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova defeated junior Wimbledon champion Ashleigh Barty 6-1, 6-2.

After losing the opening game, Kvitova won six straight in the first set against the 16-year-old Australian and again raced through the second set despite being broken once.

"She has a big serve with kicks and good forehand," Kvitova said. "She has very good touch." The left-handed Czech won her first Grand Slam title at Wimbledon last year, and then won the WTA Championships. Although she has yet to win a title in 2012, she is seeded fourth at Roland Garros and is expected to make it deep into the tournament.

Barty is the youngest player in the draw at the French Open, one of only eight teenagers entered. The Australian received a wild-card invitation to compete in Paris.

"It was tough out there today," Barty said. "I didn't play my best tennis, but she didn't allow me to. I was out there giving it my all, but unfortunately just didn't come out on top today." The oldest player in the draw, 41-year-old Kimiko Date-Krumm of Japan, lost to 2010 French Open champion Francesca Schiavone of Italy 6-3, 6-1.

Sixth-seeded David Ferrer of Spain and No. 8 Janko Tipsarevic of Serbia advanced in the men's tournament.

Later Tuesday, defending champion Rafael Nadal will begin his quest for a record-breaking seventh title at Roland Garros. On the women's side, 13-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams was scheduled to be in action.

Sharapova has won the other three Grand Slam titles, but she has never reached the final at Roland Garros. Last year, however, she equaled her best result by making the semifinals.

"I feel like with every year I have improved and I enjoy it much more," Sharapova said. "I think I learn a lot more about the game and the point construction. I feel like I'm moving a lot better than I did years previously, which has helped me a lot in the recovery process within the point." She moved well enough against Cadantu, a 22-year-old Romanian who was making her French Open debut.

"For me, to have that big crowd, it was a lot," Cadantu said after playing on Court Suzanne Lenglen, the second biggest stadium at Roland Garros. "I enjoyed it a lot."


May/29/2012

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