Safina, Rezai pick up wins in Morocco
Top-seeded Aravane Rezai of France rallied to beat Arantxa Rus of the Netherlands 4-6, 6-4, 6-3 in the first round of the the Grand Prix Sar on Tuesday.
Rezai dropped serve three times in the first set, but broke on three occasions in the second to level the match. The Frechwoman saved four break points in the decider to close out the match after 2 hours, 33 minutes.
Rezai, who has won four WTA titles but hasn't advanced past the third round at a tournament this season, will next play Nadia Lalami of Morocco.
Former No. 1 Dinara Safina eased into the second round with a 6-1, 6-0 win over American Jill Craybas.
Safina struggled with her first serve, landing only 38 percent, but converted five of her seven break points to seal victory in 51 minutes.
Safina will next play either eighth-seeded Alize Cornet of France or Andrea Hlavackova of the Czech Republic.
Other first-round winners at the clay-court tournament included Lalami, Eleni Daniilidou of Greece, Anastasia Pivovareva of Russia, Kirsten Flipkens of Belgium and Alberta Brianti of Italy.