Apia International 2017: Sunday Sydney Tennis Scores, Results, Updated Schedule

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistJanuary 8, 2017

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 08:  Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia plays a backhand shot in her 1st round match against Irina-Camelia Begu of Romania during the 2017 Sydney International at Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre on January 8, 2017 in Sydney, Australia.  (Photo by Brett Hemmings/Getty Images)
Brett Hemmings/Getty Images

Fifth seed and defending champion Svetlana Kuznetsova is safely through to Round 2 of the 2017 Apia International Sydney, as she secured a 6-1, 6-4 win over Irina-Camelia Begu on Sunday.

The Russian was the star attraction as the main draw got underway and didn’t disappoint those in attendance, turning in a confident display to get the better of the Romanian. Eugenie Bouchard, who beat Shuai Zhang in straight sets, is also through to the second round.

There was a solitary match to savour from the men’s draw, as Nicolas Mahut was able to get past Thomaz Bellucci in a straightforward manner.

Here are the results in full from Sydney, a closer look back at the best of the action and the provisional schedule for Monday’s play.

 

Apia International Sydney 2017: Sunday Results
Women's DrawScore
(5) Svetlana Kuznetsova bt. Irina-Camelia Begu6-1, 6-4
Daria Kasatkina bt. Timea Babos3-6, 6-4, 6-2
Yulia Putintseva bt. Belinda Bencic6-4, 2-3 (Ret)
Eugenie Bouchard bt. Shuai Zhang7-6 (1), 6-2
Men's DrawScore
Nicolas Mahut bt. Thomaz Bellucci6-2, 7-6 (2)
ApiaInternational.com
Apia International Sydney 2017: Monday Schedule
Ken Rosewall Arena
Matthew Bartonvs.Kyle Edmund
Samantha Stosurvs.Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova
(10) Caroline Wozniackivs.Monica Puig
(5) Philipp Kohlschreibervs.Fabio Fognini
Show Court 1
(3) Dominika Cibulkovavs.Laura Siegemund
Gastao Eliasvs.Christopher O'Connell
Florian Mayervs.Paolo Lorenzi
Donna Vekicvs.Daria Gavrilova
Court 3
Arina Rodionovavs.(6) Johanna Konta
Daniel Evansvs.Thiago Monteiro
(8) Elena Vesninavs.CoCo Vandeweghe
Viktor Troicki & Nenad Zimonjicvs.Mariusz Fyrstenberg & Martin Klizan
Kateryna Bondarenko & Yulia Putintsevavs.(2) Martina Hingis & CoCo Vandeweghe
Court 4
Maria Sakkarivs.(9) Roberta Vinci
Barbora Strycovavs.Ekaterina Makarova
Kateryna Bondarenkovs.Christina McHale
Irina Falconivs.Ying-Ying Duan
ATPWorldTour.com

Provisional order of play courtesy of the ATP website.

     

Kuznetsova Kicks Off Title Defence in Style

Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia hits a return against Garbine Muguruza of Spain in their women's singles quarter-final match at the Brisbane International tennis tournament in Brisbane on January 5, 2017. / AFP / Saeed KHAN / -- IMAGE RESTRICTED TO EDITORIA
SAEED KHAN/Getty Images

Having triumphed at this event in 2016, Kuznetsova picked up from where she left off in Sydney against a dangerous opponent in Begu.

Any nerves were settled by an early break of the Romanian's serve, and from there, the champion started to dictate points. Kuznetsova’s serve was strong, her groundstrokes were accurate and the variety of her play was too much for the Begu to cope with in a lopsided opener.

Per the WTA Twitter account, it didn’t take the two-time Grand Slam winner long to find her groove:

Another break in the second set looked as though it was going to bring a swift end to the match, although to her credit, Begu battled back to level at 4-4. However, with the finishing line in sight, Kuznetsova upped the ante, wrapping the match up in just 76 minutes.

Kuznetsova said afterward she’s not feeling too much pressure as the defending champion. "I never thought of defending my title or something like that," she said, per the event’s official website. "It’s just another tournament—the title I have at home, and no one will take it away from me. This is another year and another opportunity to play."

Bouchard, looking to bounce back from a tough 2016, is also into the next round after showing some steely will against Zhang.

Bouchard battled hard to win an even first set.
Bouchard battled hard to win an even first set.PETER PARKS/Getty Images

The former world No. 5 has failed to advance further than Round 2 in any tournament in the last six months and could have easily crumbled in a tight first set, especially after a recent defeat to Shelby Rogers in Round 1 at the Brisbane International.

However, she blitzed her way back from 5-2 to stay in the set before taking the opening stanza with a dominant showing in the tiebreak. From there, the class of the Canadian shone through.

Belinda Bencic is not through, though, as she pulled out of her match with Yulia Putintseva. After losing the first set 6-4, the Swiss called time on the contest with a 3-2 lead in the second stanza. The reason for her withdrawal was pretty clear based on this Twitter post:

The men’s side saw just one match on Sunday, with Mahut making his way into Round 2 at Bellucci's expense.

The veteran Frenchman will have his work cut out to get into the quarter-finals, though, as he’ll take on second seed Pablo Cuevas in his next match Down Under. The impressive Austrian Dominic Thiem is the top seed in the men’s draw this year.