ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) Top-seeded Belinda Bencic struggled with her serve as she began her campaign at the St. Petersburg Ladies Trophy with a 7-6 (3), 6-3 win Thursday over German opponent Annika Beck.
World No. 11 Bencic was broken four times in a chaotic first set in which she recorded six double faults, including one on break point that allowed Beck to serve for the set at 6-5. However, the Swiss 18-year-old recovered to break Beck and dominate both the resulting tiebreak and second set.
Bencic, who had a first-round bye, next plays a quarterfinal against either fifth seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia or Germany's Carina Witthoeft, who meet later Thursday.
Earlier, ninth-seeded Monica Niculescu of Romania was beaten 4-6, 6-1, 6-3 in her second-round match with Hungary's Timea Babos.