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Flipkens beats Vekic at ASB Classic in Auckland

January 1, 2018

AUCKLAND, New Zealand (AP) — Donna Vekic became the first seeded player ousted at the ASB Tennis Classic when she lost 7-6 (5), 3-6, 6-3 to Belgium’s Kristen Flipkens on Monday in a rain-interrupted first-round match.

After losing a first set which was punctuated by rain delays and a five-minute break when Flipkens sought treatment for an injured shoulder, the eighth-seeded Vekic seemed to hold the upper hand, sweeping the second set in 34 minutes.

But the 21-year-old Croatian player lost momentum with a series of unforced errors which led to an early service break in the third set. She rallied to level at 4-4, then lost serve and squandered two break points before Flipkens served out the match.

Flipkens improved her record to 5-0 against Vekic and said she would seek physio treatment before the second round.

Earlier, Petra Martic beat Marketa Vondrousova 7-6 (2), 6-3 and Su-Wei Hsieh beat Nao Hibino 6-0, 6-3.

Second-seeded Julia Goerges was due to play Olympic gold medalist Monica Puig later Monday.

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