Tennis: Venus Williams upsets defending champ Kiki Bertens in Ohio

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Williams celebrates match point over Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands.
Williams celebrates match point over Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands.PHOTO: AFP

MASON, Ohio (AP) – Venus Williams reached the third round of the Western & Southern Open with a 6-3, 3-6, 7-6 (4) upset of defending champion Kiki Bertens on Tuesday (Aug 13).

Bertens, seeded fifth, rallied from deficits of 3-0 and 5-2 in the third set to force a tiebreaker. The 2-hour, 17-minute match ended when she sailed a forehand wide.

In another upset in this US Open tuneup, 13th-seeded Angelique Kerber was knocked out by unseeded Anett Kontaveit 7-6 (7), 6-2, and 15th-seeded Qiang Wang lost to Su-Wei Hsieh 6-3, 6-4.

Two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka, who won Cincinnati in 2013, reached the second round after 12th-seeded Belinda Bencic retired because of an injured left foot while trailing 6-4, 1-0.

On the men’s side, Stan Wawrinka advanced to the second round with a 5-7, 6-4, 7-6 (4) victory over Grigor Dimitrov, and fourth-seeded Dominic Thiem withdrew because of illness.

In a match that lasted 2 hours, 34 minutes, Dimitrov fought off two match points in the eighth game of the third set and forced a tiebreaker. Wawrinka won the match with an ace.

Wawrinka next faces qualifier Andrey Rublev, who advanced with a 6-7 (4), 6-4, 6-2 victory over 15th-seeded Nikoloz Basilashvili.

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