29 Dec 2012

Erakovic gets a qualifier in first round of ASB Classic

5:29 pm on 29 December 2012

The New Zealand tennis number one Marina Erakovic will face a qualifier in the local WTA Classic tournament, which starts in earnest on Monday.

The draw was also kind to big-serving second seed Julia Georges of Germany, who plays another of the four qualifiers.

The qualifying tournament is underway with the other two successful players set to face one of either Mona Barthel, another German, or Belgium's Kirsten Flipkins.

Only one of the five New Zealanders playing the qualifiers has made it through the first round, with Emma Hayman winning 7-5 6-1 over her compatriot, Imogen Golder - the new national champion.

Rising teenager Paige Hourigan lost in straight sets to Chanel Simmonds, the South African winning 6-0 6-3 on centre court, while Claudia Williams was also thrashed by a Canadian, Stephanie Dubois, 6-0 6-1 and Abigail Guthrie lost 6-1 6-1 to the Frenchwoman Irena Pavlovic.