Johanna Konta's winless 2020 continues with St Petersburg loss

Belinda Bencic starts with battling win as Johanna Konta goes out in St Petersburg

Bencic starts with battling win as Konta goes out in St Petersburg

The 2020 without victories of Johanna Konta continued while losing in straight sets against world number 159 Oceane Dodin in the St. Petersburg Ladies Trophy.

She chose to miss Great Britain's Fed Cup play-off against Slovakia, instead taking a wild card into the WTA tournament in Russian Federation, where she received a first-round bye as the fourth seed.

In round of 16 action, No. 3 seed Qiang Wang of China beat Poland's Katarzyna Kawa 6-3, 6-4, No. 4 Saisai Zheng of China defeated Taiwan's En-Shuo Liang 6-4, 6-3, Switzerland's Leonie Kung upset No. 7 Lin Zhu of China 6-3, 6-1, and No. 8 Nao Hibino of Japan crushed Thailand's Peangtarn Plipuech 6-0, 6-1.

Elsewhere in the draw, Elena Rybakina beat Katerina Siniakova 6-3 6-4 in one hr and also 19 mins and also she will certainly be Dodin's following challenger.

Bencic then claimed the tie-break after racing to win the first five points and tightened things up in the second set, where one solitary break in the seventh game proved decisive.

The front runner from Ukraine was making her opening night in Hua Hin and also required simply 79 mins to defeat the Dutch No 4. She will next take on Australian qualifier Storm Sanders, a 6-3, 6-4 victor against Norway's Ulrikke Eikeri.

On Monday, she marked her return to tennis with a doubles win.

The four-time Grand Slam champ Kim Clijsters will certainly make her go back to affordable tennis there.

It's not all positive news ahead of the tournament though, two key players have been forced to withdraw due to injury; Bianca Andreescu and Ashleigh Barty.

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