Seles continues comeback with victory in Toronto

By Curt Rush

TORONTO, Canada (Reuters) – Monica Seles, playing in her fourth straight tournament as she continues her comeback from a foot injury, advanced to the third round of the Canadian Open Wednesday with a 6-3 6-2 victory over Marissa Irvin.

Seles, the fifth seed who received an opening-round bye, will meet 10th-seeded Jelena Dokic of Yugoslavia in the third round.

Seles, who missed the French Open and Wimbledon with a stress reaction in her right foot, has advanced to two finals and one semifinal, since returning from injury.

During her run she has registered a couple of wins over world number one Martina Hingis and victories over other big names like Jennifer Capriati and Serena Williams .

Despite her run of good form, just two weeks before the U.S. Open , Seles said she could pull out of next week’s tournament in New Haven.

“I want to see how far I go along in this tournament and then make my decision once I know,” said Seles, who practiced for about 10 minutes after the match.

“But still my priority is my health. If I have any pain or any indication of pain, I would stop.”

Seles originally did not plan to play at the Canadian Open, but Hingis’s withdrawal meant she decided to enter and try to accumulate points and get a better seeding for the U.S. Open.

She is currently ranked number eight, up from 10 last week, and is on course to meet second seed Justine Henin of Belgium in the quarter-finals in Toronto.

In other matches number three Amelie Mauresmo of France beat Russia’s Elena Likhovtseva 6-0 6-3, fourth-seed Serena Williams of the U.S. beat Croatia’s Iva Majoli 7-6 (7-2) 6-1 while ninth seed Meghann Shaughnessy of the U.S. beat Japan’s Shinobu Asagoe 6-0 6-4.

Seles’s opponent in the next round, Dokic, beat Spain’s Magui Serna 6-1 6-4, while 11th-seed Sandrine Testud beat Argentina’s Mariana Diaz-Oliva 6-4 6-1.

Chanda Rubin of the U.S. failed to advance when she rolled her ankle and had to retire with American Amy Frazier leading 6-4 3-6 1-0.

In a late match, eighth seed Magdalena of Bulgaria was upset 6-4 7-6 (7-4) by Daja Bedanova of the Czech Republic.