Peng upsets Dementieva in straight sets

August 2, 2005 08:30 PM
CARLSBAD, Calif. (AP) - Rising teenager Shuai Peng upset third-seeded Elena Dementieva 7-5, 6-4 Tuesday in the second round of the Acura Classic.

Peng took advantage of Dementieva's weak serve to break the Russian seven times in 11 games for her third career win and second this season over a top-10 opponent. Dementieva is ranked No. 6 in the world.

``I'm happy, but I have to keep going,'' said Peng, playing in just her second tournament in more than two months. ``The focus is to get comfortable out on the court.''

The 19-year-old player from China, said she has learned a lot from playing in a number of tough matches this season. Her biggest career victory came against another Russian, then third-ranked Anastasia Myskina, whom she beat 6-1, 6-3 in the Sydney event in January. She also upset top 10-ranked Nadia Petrova in the same event.

Peng nearly upset top-ranked Lindsay Davenport at the French Open. She had a 6-3, 5-4 lead, and was ahead 30-15 before succumbing in three sets.

``It was a tough first-round match,'' Dementieva said. ``She has a pretty solid game, the whole package. She's very aggressive from the baseline. She's playing at a high level.''

Dementieva's loss weakens an already soft field in which only four of the top 10 players in the world entered the $1.3 million tournament.

No. 2 Svetlana Kuznetsova, the top player remaining after the top-seeded Davenport withdrew due to an injury on the eve of the tournament, played in the featured night match against Klara Koukalova of the Czech Republic.

Kuznetsova is one of eight Russians left in the field of 11 who entered.

Flavia Pennetta was the only other seeded player to lose. The No. 15 seed from Italy dropped a 6-1, 7-5 second-round match to Japan's Akiko Morigami.

In first-round matches, 10th-seeded Nathalie Dechy of France defeated Puerto Rico's Kristina Brandi 6-2, 6-2, and No. 11 Jelena Jankovic of Serbia and Montenegro was a 7-5, 6-0 winner over Amy Frazier.