Watson into round two
Heather Watson made an encouraging start in Osaka with a 6-4 6-4 first-round win over Slovenia's Polona Hercog.
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The British number two, at 71st in the world 10 places higher in the rankings than Hercog, carved out 10 break points, taking three, as she thrived on her opponent's serve.
The 20-year-old took the opening set thanks to a single break of serve and broke twice in the second to close out victory at the HP Open in one hour and 29 minutes.
Watson will face sixth seed Ana Medina Garrigues or Camila Giorgi in round two. They play their match on Tuesday, the same day British number one Laura Robson also enters the fray. She faces Greece's Eleni Daniilidou, a former top-20 player who has slipped down the rankings in recent years.
In other first-round action on Monday, top seed Sam Stosur brushed aside home favourite Erika Sema 6-4 6-2.
The Australian broke twice in each set to close out victory in one hour and 16 minutes.
There was a shock for third-seeded American Christina McHale, though, as she was beaten by Chang Kai-chen of Chinese Taipei.
Chang claimed a 6-3 7-6 (7/5) win in little under two hours in a match which featured nine breaks of serve.
American Jamie Hampton saw off Japan's Ayumi Morita 6-3 6-2 and Australia's Casey Dellacqua defeated another home player in Kimiko Date-Krumm 6-3 3-6 6-4.
Misaki Doi gave the Japanese fans reason to cheer with a 7-5 3-6 6-0 success over Julia Cohen of the United States, while Pauline Parmentier won her all-French clash with Mathilde Johansson 6-2 6-2.