Heather Watson stuns Lisicki

ESPN staff
September 24, 2012
Heather Watson is ranked 48 places lower than Sabine Lisicki © PA Photos

Heather Watson recorded one of the results of her career to beat world No. 30 Sabine Lisicki in the first round of the Toray Pan Pacific Open on Monday.

Watson, ranked 78 in the world standings, was a clear underdog against the 2011 Wimbledon semi-finalist, but she terrorised the Lisicki serve en route to a 6-4 7-6(3) victory.

The first set was a tight affair between two players who were happy to allow the other to make their own mistakes. Watson created the first two break chances, saved by Lisicki, before the German wasted four of her own.

However, with the scores poised at 4-5 on the Lisicki serve, Watson finally made a breakthrough at the third attempt - taking a one-set advantage in the process.

Her joy was initially short-lived as Lisicki broke early in the second to move to a 2-1 lead, but that only served to spark a run of four consecutive penetrations of serve. The outcome was that they headed into the latter part of the set on level terms, with Lisicki forced to serve to stay in the match at 5-6.

She did so successfully to force a tiebreaker, but quickly fell behind as Watson took control at 6-1. The Brit then closed out the win with her third match point to set up a meeting with No. 2 seed Maria Sharapova in round two.

Elsewhere on Monday, former world No. 1s Ana Ivanovic and Caroline Wozniacki advanced, though 2010 champion Wozniacki was pushed to three sets by Serbia's Bojana Jovanovski before prevailing 6-0 3-6 6-4.

Fellow Serb Ivanovic led 6-3 2-0 when Andrea Hlavackova was forced to retire.

Elsewhere, Nadia Petrova dominated China's Peng Shuai to wrap up a 6-1 6-4 win, while 2010 French Open champion Francesca Schiavone battled back to beat Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan 4-6 7-6(4) 6-4.

Marion Bartoli ended the hopes of veteran local hero Kimiko Date Krumm, racing out to a 5-0 lead before progressing 6-1 6-4.

There were also wins for Kaia Kanepi, Urszula Radwanska, Tamira Paszek and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.