Seeds advance in Rome


Women’s world number two Francesca Schiavone led a host of seeds in progressing at the Rome International clay tournament at the Foro Italico here on Tuesday. The French Open champion had few problems in seeing off American qualifier Christina McHale 6-3, 6-1 to reach the third round.
In the men’s competition 16th seed Richard Gasquet was the first player through to the third round as he thrashed Russian qualifier Igor Andreev 6-1, 6-2. Spanish ninth seed Nicolas Almagro also had few problems in his first round clash against Italian wild card Simone Bolelli, winning 6-0, 7-5. It wasn’t a good day for in the men’s competition for the hosts as another wild card, Flavio Cipolla, lost to former world number three Ivan Ljubicic 6-2, 6-3.
His compatriot Mario Cilic also reached the second round as he prevailed in the battle of big-serving Croatians with Ivo Karlovic retiring while trailing 6-4, 1-0. It also wasn’t a good day for Asians as Japanese veteran Kimiko Date-Krumm lost 7-5, 6-2 to Czech Lucie Safarova and Chinese lucky loser Zheng Jie was beaten by Italian wild card Alberta Brianti 6-4, 7-5.
Another Italian wild card, Romina Oprandi, caused the upset of the day, knocking out Estonian 14th seed Kaia Kanepi 7-5, 3-6, 6-1.