Kvitova, Konta through to second round of Wuhan Open

Petro Kvitova swept to 6-3, 6-1 victory over Jelena Ostapenko in the first round of Wuhan Open on Monday. Briton Heather Watson, Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia and Russian Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova all retired from their first-round matches.

Petra Kvitova Wuhan Open Getty Images 2016

Petra Kvitova had an easy outing against Latvian teenager Jelena Ostapenko at the Wuhan Open on Monday.   -  Getty Images

Double Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova beat Latvian Jelena Ostapenko as the WTA Wuhan Open was hit by a wave of retirements on Monday.

The Czech served six aces — mirrored by her teenage opponent's six double faults — to sweep to a 6-3, 6-1 victory.

"The beginning of the match was just terrible. Afterwards, I was just more relaxed and more confident," Kvitova told reporters.

"I think the key was kind of attacking her second serve," she added.

Briton Heather Watson, Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia and Russian Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova all retired from their first-round matches Monday — taking the tally of retirements to five on just the second day of the hard court event which had already been hit by the withdrawal of former number one Serena Williams.

The pullouts enabled American Madison Brengle, Yulia Putintseva of Kazakstan and Japan's Misaki Doi to progress to the second round.

Kvitova levelled her season's score with Ostapenko, who beat the Olympic bronze medallist twice at the beginning of the year, before the Czech ousted her at the US Open.

Illness hampered the start of the 26-year-old Kvitova's season, which also saw her split with her coach of seven years David Kotyza, and she has slipped to 16th in the rankings — her lowest in five years.

But she won her first Olympic medal at Rio, losing in the semi-finals to eventual gold medallist Monica Puig before beating American Madison Keys for the third podium spot.

Meanwhile, Konta eased past German Annika Beck 6-2, 6-1 to get her campaign off to a flying start. "She fought all the way through and we had a lot of close games so I don't think the scoreline quite reflects the level of the match," Konta said after the match.

The Australian Open semi-finalist will meet Zhang Shuai of China, who beat compatriot Peng Shuai in three tightly fought sets 6-7 (5/7), 6-3, 6-4. The pair last met in Melbourne, where Konta halted qualifier Zhang's fairy-tale run in the quarter finals.

We had a great match at the Australian Open and I haven't played her since so I think it will be a great battle," Konta said.

Wimbledon quarterfinalist Dominika Cibulkova took three sets to beat French qualifier Alize Cornet 6-2, 2-6, 6-3 and next faces German Laura Siegemund.

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