The Serbia Ladies Open lost two of its top-eight seeds on Monday after third seed Shuai Zhang and eighth seed Danka Kovinic lost their respective opening-round matches. Colombian qualifier Maria Camila Osorio Serrano upset Zhang 6-2, 1-6, 7-6(4) in two hours and 21 minutes.
Not much separated the two players in the match and while Zhang finished with 97 points for the match, Osorio Serrano won 98 points. In the second round, Osorio Serrano will play either wildcard Olga Danilovic of Serbia or Russian qualifier Kamilla Rakhimova.
Spanish qualifier Cristina Bucsa ousted Kovinic in another three-set battle. Bucsa ranked 172nd in the world, posted a comeback 3-6, 6-4, 6-1 victory over the Montenegrin in two hours and four minutes. In the second round, the 23-year-old will play either Aliaksandra Sasnovich or Chinese qualifier Xiyu Wang.
Serbia Ladies Open: Yulia Putintseva provides much-needed brace
The only seed to advance to the second round on Monday was the second-seeded Yulia Putintseva. The Kazakh defeated Kaja Juvan in their first-round clash after two hours and 28 minutes of play.
Putintseva dropped the opening set but regrouped nicely to clinch a 4-6, 6-2, 6-1 win for herself. In the second round, she will play either Belgian Alison van Uytvanck or Croatian qualifier Ana Konjuh. Canadian Leylah Fernandez also won her opening-round match in Belgrade.
The left-hander was also the only player to clinch her win in straight sets. Fernandez defeated Polona Hercog of Slovenia 7-5, 6-1 in an hour and 29 minutes. In the second round, Fernandez will play either lucky loser Viktoriya Tomova of Slovakia or Serbian wildcard Lola Radivojevic.
Tomova replaced top-seed, the 30th ranked Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, in the draw of the Serbia Ladies Open after the latter pulled out of the event with an abdominal injury. The same injury had previously forced the Russian out of the Rome Open last week.