Doha, Qatar – Former world No. 1 stars Caroline Wozniacki and Ana Ivanovic were a pair of opening-round winners Monday at the $2.369 million Qatar Open.
The 10th-seeded 2011 Doha runner-up Wozniacki dismantled Bosnian lucky-loser Mervana Jugic-Salkic 6-1, 6-2, while the 13th-seeded Ivanovic drilled Austrian Tamira Paszek 6-1, 6-2 on the hardcourts at Khalifa International Tennis Complex.
Another former top-five star, the resurgent Svetlana Kuznetsova, moved into the round of 32 with a 7-6 (7-1), 6-4 decision against American qualifier Bethanie Mattek-Sands. The two-time Grand Slam champion Kuznetsova is a two- time Doha runner-up.
Other Monday winners were Aussie qualifier Anastasia Rodionova, Romanian Simona Halep, recent Paris champion Mona Barthel of Germany, French qualifier Caroline Garcia, and Russian lucky-loser Daria Gavrilova.
The top seeds at this star-studded event are world No. 1 and reigning Australian Open champ Victoria Azarenka, U.S. Open and Wimbledon titlist Serena Williams, French Open champion Maria Sharapova, and Wimbledon runner-up Agnieszka Radwanska. Williams will meet the unheralded Gavrilova to open her week, while the two-time Qatar Open titlist Sharapova will open her latest Doha stay against Garcia on Tuesday.
Azarenka beat former U.S. Open champion Sam Stosur in last year's Doha finale.
Rising American Sloane Stephens, seeded 16th this week, will play an opening- round match against Georgian Anna Tatishvili on Tuesday.
The 2013 Qatar Open champion will claim $426,000.