It was Anastasia Pavyuchenkova’s fourth appearance at the Kremlin Cup in five years and her fourth defeat in the first round. The highest-ranked teenager and world No.21 lost to Nicole Vaidisova in 2006, in 2007 to fellow Russian Evgeniya Rodina, in 2009 to Tsvetana Pironkova and this year to Slovakian Dominika Cibulkova 7-6(5) 2-6 6-0.
“I have nobody to blame for the defeat except myself,” said the fourth-seeded Pavlyuchenkova, who won just seven points against Cibulkova in the deciding set at her home tournament.
“I played well in the first set and won the second but lost concentration completely in the third. The defeat is my fault only.”
Pavyuchenkova and Cibulkova are now tied in head-to-head record at one all. Pavlyuchenkova defeated Cibulkova in the first round of Tokyo last month, 7-5 7-5. (photo: Stephane Martinache)