DUBAI, Feb. 18 (Xinhua) -- In a spectacular match which lasted three sets, the world No. 12th Ana Ivanovic from Serbia beat Tuesday Germany's Angelique Kerber in 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (8-6) in the first round of the WTA Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships here.
After losing the first set, Ivanovic found back her pace and quickly decided the second set for herself.
In the tie-break of the third and last set, Kerber appeared more exhausted, and failed to find an efficient defense against Ivanovic's powerful forehand, who at 1.84 meters height is 11 centimeters taller than Kerber.
Ivanovic kept her nerves tight and won the tie-break in a head- to-head battle by 8-6, which triggered 26-year-old Kerber to smash her racket into the corner of the court, showing her huge disappointment.
Ivanonic, aged 26, said, "It was a great match in the end and the support from my fans means a lot to me."
She said she expected the remaining tournament to be very tough, especially because world's number one and 17-times Grand Slam winner Serena Williams, USA, also advanced with a 7-6 (10-8), 6-0 win over Russian Ekaterina Makarova.
Kerber will play on Wednesday in the second round against Serena's sister Venus Williams, former world No. 1 and currently the world's number 44th.
Serena Williams said before the start of the Dubai Cup that she plays it simply "because training is boring".
Kerber's compatriot and Wimbledon 2013 finalist Sabine Lisicki also lost the first round in Dubai against Denmark's Caroline Wozniacki 2-6, 6-3, 6-3.