WTA Elite Trophy: Wild card Zhang Shuai, Elina Svitolina win opening matches at Zhuhai

Beijing: Chinese wild card Zhang Shuai romped to a 6-1, 6-1 victory over Switzerland's Timea Bacsinszky on the first day of the WTA Elite Trophy on home turf on Tuesday.

It was a welcome change of form for the 27-year-old, who last month pulled out injured from the Tianjin Open without hitting a ball, after her quarter-final exit from the China Open in Beijing.

Zhang Shuai of China celebrates her victory. AFP

Zhang Shuai of China celebrates her victory. AFP

Bacsinszky, the world number 18, only won five points on 28-ranked Zhang's serve in the entire match in the southern city of Zhuhai.

Zhang was considering retirement until her progress to the quarter-finals of the Australian Open in January started the best season of her career.

But she still needed a wild card to enter the season-ending $2.2 million tournament.

The tournament in Zhuhai features the leading players on the women's tour who didn't qualify for the season-ending WTA Finals in Singapore last week.

Carla Suarez Navarro withdrew because of a right wrist injury and was replaced by Hungarian alternate Timea Babos, who will play Bacsinszky on Wednesday.

In the day's other round-robin matches, Ukrainian fourth seed Elina Svitolina lost the first set against the Netherlands' Kiki Bertens, but came back to prevail 2-6, 6-4, 6-2 in an hour and 52 minutes.

The last match saw Italy's Roberta Vinci fall to the Czech Republic's Barbora Strycova in two games, 6-4, 6-3.

Published Date: Nov 02, 2016 16:29 PM | Updated Date: Nov 02, 2016 16:30 PM

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