WTA Palermo: Paoletti passes qualifying, finds Dodin in first round

After beating Gabriela Lee (No. 147 in the rankings) in the first qualifying round, Matilde Paoletti (943), 19, enters the main draw by beating Anastasia Tikhonova (182) in 2 sets, 6-3 6-4.

The 33rd Palermo Ladies Open Main Draw has 7 Italian tennis players. Martina Trevisan, Jasmine Paolini, and Lucia Bronzetti; Wild Cards Elisabetta Cocciaretto, Sara Errani, and Lucrezia Stefanini; and Paoletti (who received a WC from the Federation to play in the qualifications), who will play her debut WTA main draw match tomorrow at 5:30 pm against Oceane Dodin (78 in the world)

“I have played very little in recent years, but today I am good and thrilled to be in the main draw, said Paoletti. “It is an honor to do it alongside so many wonderful Italians.” I appreciate the Federation’s Wild Card. They believed in me despite my low status. Palermo is high-level. Playing my game is my objective.”

Tomorrow at 4 p.m. on center court, Romania’s Ana Bogdan (ranked 108) will play Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo (ranked 4). (No. 43, fresh from the quarterfinals in Lausanne). Next, No. 6 seed Irina Begu will play Bassols Ribera on the center court, then No. 3 seed Shuai Zhang will face Spain’s Rebeka Masarova. Zhang was a semifinals at Palermo last year and won Lyon in February. Jasmine Paolini (64) and Anna Karolina Schmiedlova (Slovakia) will close the program (world No. 76).

Petra Martic (ankle ailment) and Laura Siegmund (personal issue) have forfeited. Lucky losers Jaime Fourlis and Julia Grabher join the scoreboard.