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Azarenka First To Advance, Serena Wins

Former semi-finalist, Victoria Azarenka, coasted through her opening match at Wimbledon on Monday as she became the first woman through to the second round.

The 25-year-old Belarusian reached the lastfour stage in 2011 and 2012, losing to Petra Kvitova and Serena Williams, and is the 23rd seed this year.

She is a former world number one, however, and overwhelmed Estonian Anett Kontaveit 6-2, 6-1 in just 57 minutes on Court 12. Title favourite Serena Williams overcame a slow start at Wimbledon to advance to the second round.

She dropped her serve in the first game against 20-year-old Russian Margarita Gasparyan and took 47 minutes to win the first set 6-4. The American won the second 6-1 in 35 minutes.

The five-time Wimbledon singles champion and world No. 1 is seeking her 21st major title and second self-styled “Serena slam” — holding all four grand slam titles simultaneously. The 24th seed Flavia Pennetta was upset by Zarina Diyas, who reached the fourth round last year.

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