Seventh-seed Shinobu Asagoe was overwhelmed by Sofia Arvidsson in a battle of stamina Wednesday, failing to advance to the women’s singles quarterfinals at the Japan Open in Tokyo.
Asagoe, ranked 36th in the world, got off to a flying start against the 94th-ranked Swede, only to lose her momentum in a 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 second-round defeat at Ariake Tennis Forest Park.
Asagoe dictated the first set with a series of powerful groundstrokes and a solid rhythm, taking a 3-0 lead before Arvidsson broke back 3-1 in the fourth game.
But a series of unforced errors appeared to unravel the Japanese ace, including three missed smashes at the net that changed the complexion of the match.
“My timing was off and I got somewhat ahead of myself in my eagerness for a break point. I’d like to limit these types of routine errors in the future,” said Asagoe.
In other matches, third-seed Tatiana Golovin of France dispatched American Abigail Spears in straight sets, 6-4, 6-2, to book a second-round meeting with Saori Obata, a 6-1, 6-0 winner over Martina Sucha of Slovakia in the first round.
“I was pleased with my serve today and I think it will be a big part of my game as the tournament continues,” Golovin said.
Japan’s Akiko Morigami was sent out in a 4-6, 6-1, 6-1 loss to 16-year-old second-seeded Nicole Vaidisova of the Czech Republic in other first-round action.
In men’s singles, top-seed Mariano Puerta of Argentina breezed past American Eric Taino 6-3, 6-4 while third-seed Robby Ginepri of the United States demolished Alexander Popp of Germany 6-4, 6-0 to reach the third round.
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