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Venus silences Azarenka in Tokyo

ESPN staff
September 24, 2013 « Live County Championship coverage | Chartbeat test »
Venus Williams recorded her third straight win over Victoria Azarenka © AP
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Venus Williams ousted an out-of-sorts Victoria Azarenka from the Pan Pacific Open in Tokyo with a comfortable 6-2 6-4 second-round win.

The seven-time grand slam champion made the most of Azarenka's sluggish demeanour to notch her third unanswered career victory against the world No. 2.

Top seed Azarenka, who lost the US Open final to Serena Williams earlier this month, struggled with the heat from the outset. She opened with two double-faults, laboured around the court and was eerily mute as she fell prey to five breaks of serve by the 33-year-old, who will next face Simona Halep, who defeated Andrea Petkovic 7-6(4) 6-4.

Third seed Sara Errani was another high-profile casualty on Tuesday, beaten 6-4 6-4 by Svetlana Kuznetsova, but fellow former French Open champion Ana Ivanovic beat Elina Svitolina 6-3 6-0 and Dominika Cibulkova saw off Casey Dellacqua 7-5 6-3.

American Sloane Stephens was overturned by Canada's Eugenie Bouchard having allowed a 7-5 5-3 lead slip en route to a 5-7 7-6(9) 6-3 defeat.

Former world No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki defeated US Open semi-finalist Flavia Pennetta 6-2 6-3, while another top-ranked player Jelena Jankovic got the better of Laura Robson's conqueror Ayumi Morita 6-4 6-1. There were also wins for second seed Agnieszka Radwanska and Sam Stosur over Aleksandra Wozniack and Kimiko Date-Krumm.

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