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Azarenka takes honors as Zvonareva rivalry resumes in Stuttgart

Nonetheless, the two storied competitors put on a fine display of tennis, full of beautifully clean ball-striking and tightly contested to the end, with Azarenka finishing with 29 winners and Zvonareva with 19. Azarenka’s ambitious schedule has already involved a flight from the other side of the world, where she competed in Belarus’s narrow Fed Cup semifinal loss to Australia at the weekend, this week – and indeed, an opening slew of errors meant that she had to fend off two break points in her opening service game.

But the 29-year-old soon shook off any lingering effects of jetlag to play her role in a pulsating encounter. Relentlessly pumping the ball around the court and working both depth and angle impeccably, World No.61 Azarenka was single-minded in drawing the short ball and lethal on the finish, and broke for 4-3.

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