Wozniak advances to main draw at Monterrey Open
Aleksandra Wozniak (left) has edged Toronto's Heidi El Tabakh to qualify for the Monterrey Open. (CP file photos)
Published Monday, March 31, 2014 9:24PM EDT
Last Updated Monday, March 31, 2014 10:51PM EDT
Aleksandra Wozniak battered her way into the main draw of the Monterrey Open Monday by winning her third straight qualifier, beating Toronto’s Heidi El Tabakh 4-6, 6-3, 6-2.
El Tabakh, 25, took the first set but then stumbled against the higher-ranked Wozniak, 26, who has climbed to 172 in the women’s singles rankings after a long rehab from shoulder woes.
El Tabakh, ranked 248, has had difficulty against Montreal rivals, also losing to Wozniak in the first round of the French Open in 2012 and then losing twice earlier this year to rising Montrealer Francoise Abanda, who jumped 20 points in the latest rankings and is now ranked 285.
In her previous qualifiers, Wozniak beat the American Chieh-Yu Hsu (ranked 232) in straight sets and then and bettered France's Constance Sibille (ranked 209) in a two-set contest before prevailing in the three-setter over El Tabakh.
Wozniak will next play the 20-year-old Mexican Marcela Zacarias, ranked 379th. Zacarias comes from the high-altitude town of San Luis Potosi, a six-hour drive to the south of Monterrey.
With a win, Wozniak would face the winner of the Urszula Radwanska versus Ana Ivanovic.
Wozniak is hoping for a strong performance after bowing out early from the Sony Open in Miami, a tournament which saw fellow Montrealers Eugenie Bouchard and Abanda also sent packing early.
Abanda cracks 300
Meanwhile 18-year-old Abanda told CTV Montreal Monday that she's happy with her progress but wants to go much further.
"I started the year from scratch, so for me to crack the top 300 in the WTA rankings is good. It's definitely only the beginning and I can improve it a lot more."
Abanda heads to Bogota, Colombia next week where she will try to qualify for the Claro Open, a competition with a $250,000 purse.