Tennis: Pe'er survives early scare in Toronto

Israeli grinds out 7-5, 7-6 win against Michaela Krajicek to set up encounter with Italy's Tathiana Garbin in Rogers Cup second round.

peer hits 298.88 (photo credit: AP)
peer hits 298.88
(photo credit: AP)
Shahar Pe'er has broken out of her recent slump in form, beating Michaela Krajicek 7-5, 7-6 (2) to advance to the second round of the Rogers Cup in Toronto. However it was not all plain sailing for the Israeli who faced a stiff challenge from the Dutch player. But Pe'er, ranked No. 18 in the world, finally produced the goods and ground out the victory late Monday evening. Krajicek broke Pe'er, who was seeded 11th for the tournament, in the very first game of the match. The Israeli had two break-back points in the following game, but failed to take the advantage, instead falling two games behind. Krajicek broke Pe'er again in the third game and raced away to a promising 4-0 lead, with the set apparently heading towards a "Bagel". But Pe'er had other plans. The Israeli 'prizefighter' stopped playing her trademark baseline game and opted for low-percentage winners. The gamble paid off, as her Dutch opponent was caught off guard. Pe'er broke Krajicek three times in a row, clinching seven straight games en route to a dramatic and thrilling first set win. Pe'er was broken again in the opening game of the second set, but broke back in the fifth game to level the score at 3-3. The game turned into a see-saw battle, with both players exchanging impressive winners and raising their level of play. The result was a tight tie-breaker, which Pe'er won 9-7 to advance to the second round. Pe'er will now face Tathiana Garbin of Italy who beat Laura Granville 6-2, 6-0 on Monday evening. The Italian No. 1 easily dispensed with her American opponent and should pose a considerable threat to Pe'er.