Azarenka, Stosur open second round in Paris with easy wins
Paris, France (Sports Network) - After Tuesday's stunning loss by Serena Williams to close the first round of the 2012 French Open, there were no surprises early in second-round play on Wednesday as Victoria Azarenka and Samantha Stosur were easy winners.
The top-seeded Azarenka cruised past Germany's Dinah Pfizenmaier, 6-1, 6-1, while the sixth-seeded Stosur dismissed American Irina Falconi, 6-1, 6-4.
Azarenka, a quarterfinalist at Roland Garros last year, is trying for her second straight Grand Slam title. She won the Australian Open in January for her first career major championship.
The native of Belarus needed just 55 minutes and broke serve five times on Wednesday to advance to the third round. She will next face Canada's Aleksandra Wozniak, who knocked off 31st-seeded Chinese Zheng Jie, 6-2, 6-4, on Wednesday.
Stosur, the 2009 French runner-up and reigning U.S. Open champ, also had little trouble on Wednesday and moved on in just 63 minutes. She saved each of four break-point opportunities against her serve and converted 3-of-4 break chances.
Next up for the Australian will be Russia's Nadia Petrova, who posted a 6-3, 6-3 win Wednesday against South Africa's Chanelle Scheepers. The 27th-seeded Petrova has had her best Grand Slam results in Paris, reaching the semifinals in 2003 and 2005.
Thirteenth-seeded former world No. 1 and former French Open champ Ana Ivanovic of Serbia cruised past Israeli Peer 6-2, 6-2, while 15th-seeded Slovak Dominika Cibulkova swatted American Vania King 6-0, 6-2. Ivanovic captured her French title in 2008 and was the 2007 runner-up here to former great Justine Henin.
Another former French Open champ advanced, as 26th-seeded Russian Svetlana Kuznetsova got past Taiwan's Yung-Jan Chan 6-4, 7-6 (7-4). The former top-five star Kuznetsova titled here in 2009 and was the 2006 French runner-up to Henin.
In other action involving seeds, Spaniard Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez upended No. 20 Czech Lucie Safarova 6-4, 7-5; No. 21 Italian Sara Errani leveled American in Melanie Oudin 6-2, 6-3; France's Mathilde Johansson knocked out No. 24 Czech Petra Cetkovska 7-6 (7-1), 6-2; and No. 29 Spaniard Anabel Medina Garrigues drubbed France's Irena Pavlovic 6-3, 6-2.
In an all-American affair on Day 4, promising Florida native Sloane Stephens dismantled Minnesotan Bethanie Mattek-Sands 6-1, 6-1.
05/30 12:02:46 ET