Knapp upsets top seed

Romanian knocked out in Uzbekistan

Last Updated: 11/09/12 6:46pm

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Karin Knapp: The Italian battles through in Tashkent

Karin Knapp: The Italian battles through in Tashkent

Sky Bet

Italian Karin Knapp caused a major upset in the first round of the Tashkent Open by knocking out top-seeded Monica Niculescu.

The 135th-ranked Knapp, who made the first round of Wimbledon earlier this year, defeated her opponent in three-sets 2-6 6-3 7-5.

Romanian Niculescu, who was also beaten in the first round of the US Open, looked seemingly in control after outplaying the 25-year-old in the opening set.

But, she was broken in the eighth game of the second set and she then lost the final three games of the decider to go out.

"Monica is a very unusual player, but I have played her before and knew to win I had to push myself and hit the ball hard," said Knapp, who has been ranked as high as 35th.

"I didn't have any rhythm at the beginning but as the match progressed I started getting my strokes."

In another upset, Croatian qualifier Donna Vekic defeated fourth-seeded Magdalena Rybarikova 7-6 (7-3) 6-3.

However, there was some good news for Romania as fifth-seeded Alexandra Cadantu progressed 3-6 6-4 7-5 against Russian Ekaterina Bychkova.

Meanwhile, seeded players Bojana Jovanovski and Galina Voskoboeva both came through their respective matches in three sets.

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