Shahar Peer 390.
(photo credit: Reuters)
The Persian Gulf continued to do wonders for Shahar Pe’er’s play on Wednesday,
with the 24-year-old Israeli advancing to the third round of the Qatar Open with
her biggest win of the year, a 7-6 (3), 6-2 victory over world No. 13 Jelena
Pe’er, ranked No. 37 in the world, had lost all four of her
matches against top- 30 players in 2012 until Wednesday and entered the
tournament in Doha in far from ideal form, losing two of her three Fed Cup
singles encounters in Eilat two weeks ago before taking just four games off
Julia Goerges in the first round of the Paris Open last Tuesday.
Pe’er, who advanced to the second round in Doha with a double bagel over Nadia
Lalami, has now beaten a top player for a second straight year in Qatar after
progressing to the second round of the event in 2011 with a victory over then
world No. 13 Svetlana Kuznetsova.
Israel’s No. 1 has recorded even more
success in the Persian Gulf’s other WTA tournament, reaching at least the
quarterfinals in her previous two appearances in Dubai.
Pe’er, who hadn’t
defeated a top-20 player since getting the better of then No. 5 Francesca
Schiavone in Indian Wells last March, made her intentions clear by breaking
Jankovic, a former world No. 1, in the first game on Wednesday.
Israeli raced into a 5-2 lead, and despite twice failing to serve out the set,
held her nerve to take the tiebreak, with the Serbian committing two double
faults in the breaker of the 13 she served throughout the match.
built on the momentum to open a 3-0 lead in the second set and remained in front
to book a last-16 meeting against American Christina McHale (38).
surprised China’s Shuai Peng (16) 5-7, 6-3, 6-2 in the second round on