Indian Wells (California), Mar 8: Kimiko Date-Krumm, the oldest player in the women's draw at age 41, opened the BNP Paribas Open with a 6-1, 6-3 win over Pauline Parmentier of France on Wednesday as a swirling, gusting wind made life difficult in the first round at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden.
Mona Barthel of Germany had a 6-1, 6-2 win over 37-year-old American Jill Craybas to set up a second-round match with top-ranked Victoria Azarenka, who won the season's first major at the Australian Open.
Azarenka had a first-round bye, along with defending champion Caroline Wozniacki, who lost her No. 1 ranking at Melbourne Park in January, and the other seeded players.
Wozniacki said when she practiced Tuesday evening "it was like a hurricane, it was so windy and cold."
The weather hadn't changed much Wednesday, when the 12-day, $11 million event got under way with 16 women's singles matches in gusting winds.
No. 4-ranked Wozniacki didn't have to play, so she could sit and watch, and empathize with those who did.
Reigning Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova said in those conditions "it's not really about the tennis," as much as just keeping the ball in play.
Klara Zakopalova of the Czech Republic got the first win of the tournament, a 6-1, 6-1 victory over Laura Pous-Tio of Spain. Galina Voskoboeva of Kazakhstan, Timea Bacsinszky of Switzerland, Carla Suarez Navarro of Spain and Sorana Cirstea of Romania also moved into the next round.
Jamie Hampton routed Polona Hercog of Slovakia, 6-1, 6-1, in the opening match on center court, but her fellow American Coco Vandeweghe lost to Australia's Jarmila Gajdosova 4-6, 6-3, 6-3. The men's tournament starts Thursday.