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Zhang, Svitolina win openers at WTA Elite

Press Association logoPress Association 1/11/2016

Zhang Shuai has justified her wild card into the WTA Elite Trophy with a dominant victory over Timea Bacsinszky in Zhuhai.

The Chinese No.1 is the lowest-ranked player at the round-robin tournament, which features 12 players ranked between nine and 28.

Zhang defeated sixth seed Bacsinszky narrowly at the Rio Olympics but was much more convincing this time, racing to a 6-1 6-1 win in less than an hour.

It was a good day for the underdog, with ninth seed Barbora Strycova ending the opening day's play by defeating fifth seed Roberta Vinci 6-4 6-3.

Tenth seed Kiki Bertens looked like she might make it a hat-trick but fourth seed Elina Svitolina fought back from a set down to win 2-6 6-4 6-2.

Johanna Konta, who is the top-seeded player at the last event on the WTA calendar for 2016, will open against Sam Stosur on Wednesday (Thursday AEDT).

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