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Gavrilova hangs on to defeat Mladenovic at Cincinnati Open

Aug 14, 2017; Mason, OH, USA; Daria Gavrilova (AUS) returns a shot against Kristina Mladenovic (FRA) during the Western and Southern Open at Lindner Family Tennis Center. Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 14, 2017; Mason, OH, USA; Daria Gavrilova (AUS) returns a shot against Kristina Mladenovic (FRA) during the Western and Southern Open at Lindner Family Tennis Center. Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

(Reuters) - Australian Daria Gavrilova shook off an uncertain second set to defeat France's Kristina Mladenovic 6-0 7-6(6) on Monday at the Cincinnati Open.

After cruising through a perfect first set, the 23-year-old Gavrilova needed to save a set point in the competitive second set to hand the 13th-seeded Mladenovic her third straight loss.

"She has a history of great comebacks. She has done it at the French Open almost every match," Gavrilova said after the match.

"She stepped up her game and was playing a bit loser and was not making as many unforced errors because the first set was not a great set from her."

Gavrilova moves on to face Italian Camila Giorgi in the round of 32 on Tuesday.

Earlier in the day big-serving Czech Petra Kvitova battled back to defeat Anett Kontaveit 1-6 7-6(2) 3-6.

Kvitova, the tournament's 14th seed and a two-time Wimbledon champion, will face either wildcard American Sloane Stephens or Czech Lucie Safarova, who will play at the Lindner Family Tennis Center on Tuesday.

(Reporting by Rory Carroll; Editing by Janet Lawrence)

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