Venus wins Cincy opener

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Venus Williams posted a first-round victory Tuesday at the WTA's $2.168 million Western & Southern Open.

The former world No. 1 Williams, a wild card this week, upended 12th-seeded Olympic semifinalist Maria Kirilenko of Russia 6-3, 6-7 (5-7), 6-2 on the hardcourts at the Lindner Family Tennis Center.

In some other opening-round action involving Americans, wild card Sloane Stephens handled Bulgarian Tsvetana Pironkova 6-4, 6-1 and Czech Andrea Hlavackova dismissed fellow qualifier Bethanie Mattek-Sands 6-3, 7-5.

Additional first-round wins came for Kazakhstanian qualifier Sesil Karatantcheva, Swede Sofia Arvidsson and Georgian lucky-loser Anna Tatishvili.