Azarenka comeback halted by Konjuh in Mallorca

Ana Konjuh proved too strong for the returning Victoria Azarenka at the Mallorca Open on Thursday.

Two-time Australian Open winner Victoria Azarenka   -  Getty Images

Victoria Azarenka's comeback to the WTA circuit at the Mallorca Open came to an abrupt halt in the second round as she was easily beaten by seventh seed Ana Konjuh.

Azarenka showed her battling qualities in round one to beat Risa Ozaki in three sets, but Konjuh was just too good for the Belarusian, easing to a 6-1, 6-3.

Frustration was evident in Azarenka's play throughout the match in Santa Ponsa as groundstrokes went awry and her serve struggled for consistency.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the court, Konjuh was flowing smoothly and after wasting her first match point she emphatically sealed her win with a thumping cross-court forehand off an Azarenka second serve.

She will meet 2016 runner-up Anastasija Sevastova in the last eight after the second seed came from a set down to beat Varvara Lepchenko 6-7 (2-7), 6-1, 6-3.

Sixth seed Roberta Vinci also needed three sets to beat Kirsten Flipkens, while defending champion Caroline Garcia will have to come back on Friday to finish her match with Jana Cepelova.

Garcia looked in control as she dominated the first set but the momentum quickly swung Cepelova's way, the Slovak wasting six set points before levelling the match 3-6, 7-6(7-5).

But a winner was not decided as bad light stopped play for the day, leaving the second-round tie finely poised at 2-2 in the deciding set.

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