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By Alberto Amalfi | Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Camila Giorgi

Camila Giorgi fended off Barbora Strycova, 6-0, 2-6, 6-2, moving into the Prague Open second round.

Photo credit: TK Sparta Praha / Pavel Lebeda (

Petra Kvitova made a commanding homecoming. 

Daria Kasatkina made a quick exit.

In an all-Czech opener, Kvitova crushed wild card TerezaSmitkova, 6-1, 6-3, rolling into the J & T Banka Prague Open second round.

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The second-seeded Kvitova won 81 percent of her first-serve points and never looked stressed raising her record to 20-6 on the second.

The two-time Wimbledon champion will play Russian Natalia Vikhlyantseva for a place in the quarterfinals.

The third-seeded Kasatkina did not survive her opening test. 

In the last center court match of the day, 144th-ranked Italian lucky loser Jasmine Paolini stunned Kasatkina, 7-6 (6), 6-3, in one hour, 57 minutes, for her first Top 20 win. 

Kasatkina took a medical timeout in the second set before suffering her second straight opening-round exit.

Since falling to Naomi Osaka in the Indian Wells final in March, Kasatkina has fallen in the first round in three of her last four tournaments.

The withdrawal of Stuttgart champion Karolina Pliskova leaves Kvitova as the highest seed in Prague.

In a topsy-turvy opener, Camila Giorgi fended off Barbora Strycova, 6-0, 2-6, 6-2, moving into the second round. Winless in two prior meetings with the Czech veteran, Giorgi smacked six aces scoring her fifth win in her last seven matches.

The 26-year-old Italian meets Tamara Korpatsch for a place in the last eight.

The 151st-ranked German lucky loser was a 6-2, 7-5 victor over Frenchwoman Oceane Dodin.

Left-hander Kristyna Pliskova popped 12 aces in a 7-6 (5), 6-3, decision over Belarusian Aliaksandra Sasnovich.

Kristyna Pliskova, who toppled Kvitova en route to the Charleston quarterfinals last month, will face China's Qiang Wang in round two.

A year ago, Mona Barthel played through qualifying then defeated Giorgi, Strycova and Kristyna Pliskova in succession to claim her fourth career title in Prague.

Today, Barthel failed to survive the first hurdle.

In an all-German clash on Court 1, 158th-ranked Antonia Lottner toppled the 66th-ranked Barthel, 6-0, 7-5. Lottner will face No. 7-seeded Mihaela Buzarnescu, a 6-1, 7-5 victor over Brazilian Beatriz Haddad Maia next.

Prague native Denisa Allertova topped former world No. 7 Patty Schnyder, 6-4, 6-4. The 39-year-old Schnyder played through qualifying to reach the main draw.

Next up for Allertova is a second-round meeting with 2010 Roland Garros runner-up Samantha Stosur


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