MOSCOW, Russia (AP) _ Top-seeded Venus Williams opened her bid for the Kremlin Cup by beating Elena Likhovtseva of Russia 6-3, 6-1 on Thursday in their second-round match.

Second seed Monica Seles also advanced in the $1 million tournament, turning back Barbara Schett of Germany 6-3, 6-4.

However, a third American, Chanda Rubin, was ousted, losing to Katarina Studenikova of Slovakia 6-3, 7-5.

In another surprise, Patty Schnyder of Switzerland lost to Magui Serna of Spain 7-6 (7-3), 6-4.

The other seeded players showed their dominance, with third-seed Conchita Martinez whipping Natalya Petrova 6-0, 6-0; fifth-seed Mary Pierce breezing by Belgian Sabine Appelmans 6-2, 6-2, and Sandrine Testud of France, No. 7 seed, defeating Natasha Zvereva 6-4, 6-3.

Williams was pleased with her easy victory, after playing well past midnight Wednesday in a doubles match she won with her sister, Serena.

``It was nice to have an easy match like that because I had a long match yesterday in the doubles,'' she said.

Asked about her No. 5 ranking and Lindsay Davenport's No. 1 listing, Williams said, ``I have exactly what I deserve right now. And she has exactly what she deserves. What I deserve is No. 5.''