Sports

Sharapova rolls in French opener

Paris, France (SportsNetwork.com) - Reigning champion and two-time winner Maria Sharapova was an opening-round victor Monday at the French Open.

The second-seeded former world No. 1 star eased past Estonian Kaia Kanepi 6-2, 6-4 on the red clay at Court Chatrier.

Sharapova titled here in 2012 and last year when she bested Romanian Simona Halep in the final.

The five-time Grand Slam champion Sharapova has reached at least the semifinals the last four years in Paris. In addition to her two titles, the tall Russian was the 2013 Roland Garros runner-up to Serena Williams, who also got the best of Sharapova in January's Aussie finale.

Sharapova's second-round opponent will be fellow Russian Vitalia Diatchenko.

Meanwhile, eighth-seeded Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro and 11th-seeded German Angelique Kerber joined Sharapova in the round of 64.

Suarez Navarro, who was the runner-up to Sharapova in Rome two weeks ago, advanced with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Romanian Monica Niculescu. A two-time French Open quarterfinalist, Suarez Navarro won her WTA-leading 32nd match of the year.

Kerber, who already owns two clay-court titles this season, routed Hungarian Timea Babos 6-0, 6-1.

An upset came when German Annika Beck doused 14th-seeded former Wimbledon runner-up Agnieszka Radwanska 6-2, 3-6, 6-1 at Stade Roland Garros.

In other action involving seeds, No. 19 Ukrainian Elina Svitolina blitzed Belgian Yanina Wickmayer 6-2, 6-2; No. 20 former Wimbledon runner-up Sabine Lisicki of Germany mauled Puerto Rican Monica Puig 6-3, 6-2; No. 26 Aussie Samantha Stosur drilled American Madison Brengle 6-1, 6-3; and No. 29 French favorite Alize Cornet overcame Italian Roberta Vinci, a runner-up in Nurnberg last week, 4-6, 6-4, 6-1. The former U.S. Open champion Stosur is fresh off her clay-court title in Strasbourg, France.

Several other women reached the second round, including Romanian Alexandra Dulgheru and France's Virginie Razzano.