World News



British Queen celebrates

A former world number one yet without a Grand Slam singles title to her name - and, moreover, one who arrived at Roland Garros on the back of opening round losses in her last four tournaments.

Yet Caroline Wozniacki shrugged off any talk of impending crisis on Monday as she breezed into the second round of the French Open with a 6-3, 6-2 swamping of British hope Laura Robson, who utterly failed to live up to high hopes of possibly scalping the number 10 seed.

British women have in recent decades shown scant affinity with Parisian clay -- Sue Barker was the last to lift the singles crown in 1976 -- yet Robson arrived with a ranking of 35 and having recorded victories this season over Petra Kvitova, Agnieszka Radwanska and Venus Williams.

Instead of seizing the day, Robson produced a nervy and error-strewn performance while Wozniacki in contrast rediscovered the kind of form which propelled her to the top of the rankings as early as October 2010.

Even so, the 22-year-old from Odense would have had every right to be cautious given a woeful record at the tournament which boasts just one run to the quarter-finals in six visits.

On Monday, however, and with golfer champion boyfriend Rory McIlroy willing her on, Wozniacki looked a decent bet to improve upon that record and possibly even steel herself to end her Grand Slam duck.

"To be honest my confidence has always been good," said Wozniacki after her win in 71min which featured five breaks of the Robson serve as well as three aces for good measure.

"I knew it was going to be a tough match because Laura is a great player. You know, she's young, but she has been playing really well lately," added the Dane, saying her greater experience had stood her in good stead against a player three years her junior who failed to produce the goods on the day on the Suzanne Lenglen court.

"I know where I stand. I know how I play my best. You know, she's only 19. She's so young. I know I'm only 22, but still, you know, it's still three years older.

"I know the type of play she was playing. You know, going into the match I knew what to expect, and I was just trying to do the things I had to do out there," said the blonde star, who next meets Serb Bojana Jovanovski after her concentrated aggression sent Robson packing.


Robson for her part said her showing had been a major disappointment.

Asked what she had learned from the experience she smiled and said: "Not to make so many mistakes. I think that's the key one.

"I'm in the process of changing my serve, so it was never going to be perfect today."

Wozniacki meanwhile says she will not be swapping her racquet for a golf club any time soon after her Masters par-3 competition efforts at August left her embarrassed as she caddied for Mcllroy.

"I think I made the biggest divot on the grass. And I got quite a few comments after that. For example, like, you know, 'How much did you have to pay Augusta for the one acre of grass that you tore up?'

"And Andy Roddick, he tweeted me afterwards going, 'Oh, you know, the grass almost went further than your ball.' I'm like, well, as far as I remember, his ball hit the water, too.

AFP, photo by Dana Anders