Australia's Sam Stosur, the 2011 U.S. Open champion, lost to Italy's Francesca Schiavone, 6-2, 6-4, in the first round of the Sydney International Tournament. Schiavone has also defeated Stosur at the 2010 French Open final and had little to no trouble once again defeating her early on in this tournament.
Stosur has only won one match in the past week and will have little match preparation leading into the Australian Open, where she will chase a second Grand Slam title after defeating Serena Williams in the finals of the 2011 U.S. Open.
"You do all the work leading up and you feel okay and then today all of a sudden it's just like a bombshell hits you," said Stosur.
Although Stosur had problems advancing, Li Na, Victoria Azarenka, Marion Bartoli and Agnieszka Radwanska all advanced onto the second round of play. Nine out of the top ten women were entered into competition at the Sydney International and two are already out of contention for the title. In other first-round matches, Azarenka defeated Stefanie Vogele, 6-2, 6-1, Bartoli defeated Polona Hercog, 6-3, 6-3, and Radwanska, defeated Urszula Radwanska, 6-1, 6-1.