WTA BNP Paribas: Heather Watson and Laura Robson both lose in the first round
Last Updated: 08/03/13 6:49am
British pair Heather Watson and Laura Robson were both eliminated from the BNP Paribas Open in the opening round.
Watson recently rose to a career-high 39th in the world but suffered a 6-2 6-4 defeat to Irina-Camelia Begu at Indian Wells.
The 20-year-old from Guernsey proved a match for Begu, who is ranked 14 places below her, throughout but consistently came up short on the big points.
Watson forced six break points in the match but failed to convert any, while from the same number of opportunities Begu broke twice in the first set and once in the second to secure the win in an hour and 43 minutes.
Robson, meanwhile, cruised into a big lead before collapsing to a 2-6 7-6 (7-2) 6-1 defeat against Sofia Arvidsson.
Robson, the world No 43, took the first set with ease before racing into a 4-1 lead in the second but, with the winning line in sight, she capitulated to hand victory to her Swedish opponent.
Elsewhere in first round action, Begu's fellow Romanian Monica Niculescu thrashed Elina Svitolina 6-0 6-0 while American wildcard Taylor Townsend beat Lucie Hradecka to set up a meeting with Ana Ivanovic.
Kimiko Date-Krumm, Daniela Hantuchova and Alize Cornet all needed three sets to progress to the next round.
Date-Krumm saw off Galina Voskoboeva 6-4 3-6 6-4, Hantuchova edged out Stephanie Foretz Gacon by the same scoreline and Cornet toppled Monica Puig 6-7 (7-3) 6-2 6-2.
Jamie Hampton won the all-American clash against Bethanie Mattek-Sands 5-7 6-3 6-1, Stefanie Voegele was a 4-6 6-4 6-3 victor over Petra Martic.