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Sharapova back in the groove

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Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:29

The Russian has not played a singles match on the WTA Tour since the Rogers Cup in Montreal last August because of a shoulder injury.

She showed no sign of rust in the early exchanges but was then made to work hard before eventually prevailing 6-1 6-7 (6/8) 6-3 in two hours 35 minutes.

Sharapova, who was handed a wild card to the event in the Polish capital, will face an equally tough task in the next round as she is set to meet top seed Caroline Wozniacki.

Denmark’s Wozniacki, who must first beat a qualifier/lucky loser in her first-round match, reached the final of the Madrid Open but lost Sunday’s final to world number one Dinara Safina.

In other matches on Monday in Warsaw, third seed Zheng Jie of China battled from a set down to overcome Belarus’ Olga Govortsova 4-6 7-6 (7/0) 6-3.

Seventh seed Bethanie Mattek-Sands and ninth seed Tsvetana Pironkova did not fare so well, suffering straight-sets defeats to unseeded opponents.

Great Britain’s Anne Keothavong beat American Mattek-Sands 6-2 7-6 (7/4) while Ukraine’s Kateryna Bondarenko was a 7-5 6-2 winner against Bulgaria’s Pironkova.

Poland’s Marta Domachowska delighted the home crowd with a straightforward 6-2 6-1 triumph against Akgul Amanmuradova of Uzbekistan to also claim her place in round two.

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