• WTA

Watson crashes out to Sevastova

ESPN staff
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Heather Watson came up short in the second round in Thailand © Getty Images
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Heather Watson suffered a shock defeat at the hands of Anastasija Sevastova in the second round of the Pattaya Open.

The British No. 1 is now ranked 40 in the world and she found herself seeded eight for the event. She cruised into the second round, as her opponent Timea Babos retired when a set down, but there was no further progress as she came unstuck against the world No. 183.

The opening set was a tight affair, with one break of serve apiece, but it was Sevastova who took control in the breaker. The Latvian raced into a 4-1 lead and it was an advantage she did not surrender thanks to some solid serving.

Watson looked like asserting her class when breaking at the start of the second set, but she gifted a break back. Watson broke for a second time in the set in the ninth game and she held serve one game later to level the match.

Sevastova could have been forgiven for wilting against a player ranks 143 places above her but she steeled herself to break at the start of the third set. She secured a vital second break of serve and, despite mixing 11 aces and 10 double faults, the cushion enabled her to wrap up a 7-6(4) 4-6 6-2 success.

There was a shock in the first round of the Pattaya Open, as No. 1 seed Ana Ivanovic was ousted by Ayum Morita. The match was carried over on account of rain and the delay did not knock Morita out of her stride as she held her nerve to claim a 6-3 5-7 6-3 success.

Also in first-round action, the sixth seed Daniela Hantuchova came through in a see-saw battle against Olga Puchkova - winning 6-1 3-6 6-0.

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