MX23RW : Wednesday, November 21 14:38:14

Result: Carla Suarez Navarro sets up second-round meeting with Heather Watson in Rome

Carla Suarez Navarro will face Heather Watson in the second round of the Italian Open after battling past Mona Barthel on Tuesday.

Spain's Carla Suarez Navarro has fought off Mona Barthel in three sets at the Italian Open to book her place in round two.

World number 38 Barthel recovered from a slow start as she saved three break points from 0-40 down in the opening game before breaking Suarez Navarro to love and consolidating the advantage to move 3-0 in front.

She held serve once more to move 4-1 ahead, but 10th seed Suarez Navarro took control from there in the first set by winning five games in a row to clinch the opener 6-4.

Both women struggled on serve in the second set, with Barthel securing the only hold on her way to a 6-2 success that forced a decider.

Suarez Navarro broke in a mammoth opening game at the start of the third and that seemed to break Barthel's resistance. The Spaniard never gave up her advantage, winning 6-3 to seal victory in two hours and 11 minutes.

She will next face Great Britain's Heather Watson in the second round after the latter comfortably saw off home favourite Roberta Vinci yesterday.

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Heather Watson of Great Britain celebrates winning the first set against Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland during day seven of the BNP Paribas Open tennis on March 15, 2015
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