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Svetlana Kuznetsova began her preparations for this month’s US Open tennis betting with a win in the Mercury Insurance Open. The Russian, who won at Flushing Meadows in 2004, was too strong for her opponent winning in three sets against eighth-seeded Yanina Wickmayer to advance to the final 16 in San Diego.

The victory over the 16th-ranked Belgian was Kuznetsova's first win over a top-20 opponent since she beat No. 5 Elena Dementieva at the WTA Tour Championships last November. Kuznetsova had previously lost six straight matches opponents in the top 20 prior to San Diego.

It was a much-needed win for Kuznetsova, who ended last season ranked No. 3, but has dropped to No. 21 during her 10 month barren spell. The 2009 French Open champion has not won a title since she beat Agnieszka Radwanska to win in Beijing last October. Kuznetsova has reached the quarter final stage just once in 11 tournaments this season, a shocking stat from such a talented player

In a bid to get as much court time as possible to boost her US open tournament odds, Kuznetsova is also playing doubles this week. She will be teaming up with Wimbledon singles and doubles finalist Vera Zvonareva. Kuznetsova's win over Wickmayer was just her third match since the start of Wimbledon and she will need more competitive practice if she is to challenge at Flushing Meadows.

Next up for Kuznetsova is a quarter final with Italian Sara Errani. The winner of that match could face Zvonareva, who Dominika Cibulkova, 6-0, 3-6, 6-4 on Tuesday, for a spot in the semifinals.
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