Puig, Zvonareva advance in Thailand

Pattaya City, Thailand (SportsNetwork.com) – Seeded Monica Puig and two-time
Grand Slam finalist Vera Zvonareva were among Monday’s first-round winners at
the Thailand Open.

The seventh seed Puig, of Puerto Rico, handled Swiss Stefanie Voegele 6-2, 7-6
(7-4), while the wild card and former top-10 star Zvonareva, of Russia, routed
Chinese Wang Qiang 6-2, 6-2 at this hardcourt event.

Zvonareva captured this Thai tournament in 2009 and 2010 — the same year she
reached Wimbledon and U.S. Open finals.

“It always looks easy from the side, but it was not on the court — I think
she’s a good up-and-coming player and has already made it into the Top 100,”
Zvonareva said after beating Wang. “But it was a tough match and I’m happy
with the way I handled it.

“Playing the early rounds is never easy and you’re still getting used to the
conditions. I think I did well. I still have a lot of things to improve for my
second round, but I’m happy with my performance tonight.”

Also on Day 1, Russian Evgeniya Rodina got past Kazakhstan’s Yulia Putintseva
7-6 (7-2), 6-4 and Swiss Romina Oprandi rolled past Russian Elena Vesnina 6-3,

On Tuesday, opening-round matches will come for top seeds Peng Shuai, Elina
Svitolina and Zarina Diyas.

Russian Ekaterina Makarova is not defending her title this week.

The 2015 Pattaya City titlist will claim $43,000.