Doha: Fresh off winning a second consecutive Australian Open, top-ranked Victoria Azarenka breezed into the third round of the Qatar Open with a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Romina Oprandi on Wednesday.
The defending champion was joined by fourth-ranked Agnieszka Radwanska, who beat Australian qualifier Anastasia Rodionova 6-3, 6-2. But American Sloane Stephens, who upset Serena Williams in the Australian Open quarterfinals, was beaten by Klara Zakopalova in three sets.
Azarenka, who retains her top ranking if she reaches the final and Williams fails to reach the semifinals, had a nervous start. She was broken early and quickly fell behind 2-0. But Azarenka recovered, breaking the Swiss player three times to win the first set. Azarenka jumped out to 3-0 in the second and wasn't caught.