Sharapova and Murray show off title credentials

Mon May 25, 2015 3:53pm EDT
 
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By Martyn Herman

PARIS (Reuters) - Maria Sharapova got back in the groove at her happiest hunting ground while Andy Murray's growing love of clay blossomed as both posted easy first-round wins at the French Open on Monday.

Defending champion Sharapova was nursing a cold but opened her bid for a third Roland Garros title in four years with a 6-2 6-4 victory over Estonian Kaia Kanepi on a breezy Court Phillipe Chatrier.

Men's third seed Murray then took his winning streak on the red dust to 11 matches by overpowering Argentine lucky loser Facundo Arguello 6-3 6-3 6-1, maintaining his unbeaten run since marrying long-term partner Kim Sears.

Sharapova, who was also champion in 2012 and runner-up in 2013 despite an intense dislike for the surface earlier in her illustrious career, produced her usual power tennis to ease through to the second round.

It was not a perfect performance, perhaps due to the cough that was troubling her, but she never looked in danger as she set up a meeting with fellow Russian Vitalia Diatchenko.

Sharapova left to a few boos though after declining an on-court interview.

"Unless I'm really in my coffin I'm going to be out there," she told reporters. "I got sick a week before the tournament, not right before.

"I guess it's a little bit better timing but it's just the way it is. I'm getting over it, hopefully it will pass soon."   Continued...

 
Maria Sharapova of Russia celebrates after beating Kaia Kanepi of Estonia during their women's singles match at the French Open tennis tournament at the Roland Garros stadium in Paris, France, May 25, 2015. REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier