Three time Kenya Open champion Shufaa Changawa turned on style, beating Getrude Tuei in straight sets to reach the second round of the Kenya Open Tennis Championships at the Nairobi Club on Monday.
Changawa, who is eyeing her fourth cup success after her victories in 2011, 2014 and 2016, thrashed Tuei 6-0 and 6-0 and will now meet Rose Wanjala on Tuesday for a place in the quarterfinals.
Wanjala eased past Sylvia Kivaze in straight sets of 6-1, 6-1 for Changawa’s date in the women’s competition.
Changawa expects to face seventh seed Uganda’s Rossette Musoke in the quarters and perhaps fourth seed Narindra Ranaivo from Madagascar in the semi-finals.
Last year’s finalists, winner Natali Coronel from Argentina and Gabonese Celestine Avormo will miss this year’s women action.
Narindra and her twin sister Mialy had walkovers to the second round against Joy Lister and Christine Kyalo.
Second seed Angela Okutoyi, who is fresh from winning Africa Junior Under-14 title in Algeria last weekend, takes to the court against Kitty Van Heyden in the first round Tuesday.
Okutoyi, who dispatched home player Bouchra 4-6, 6-0 and 6-1 to lift the Africa title on Saturday in Algiers, is expected back in the country at dawn on Tuesday.
In other first round matches, Esther Wahome edged out Cythia Tayebwa 6-2, 6-0 to set up Nancy Nduku in the second round. Nduku beat Nicole Zawadi 6-2, 6-0 in the first round.
Alicia Owegi beat Miotosoa Rasendra from Madagascar 6-4, 7-6(4) to meet Rosy Asumwa in the second round. Asumwa dispatched Gabriella Miheso 6-2, 6-0.
In men’s championship, top seed Ismael Changawa of Kenya meets Christian Vester of Germany in the second round. Changawa got a bye to the second round while Vester edged out Fredrick Clay of Kenya 6-3, 6-2.
Second seeded Kenya’s Ibrahim Kibet, who also got a bye to the second round takes on compatriot Brandon Sagala. Sagala got the second round ticket after battling to brush aside John Kamau 7-5, 6-7, 6-1.
Changawa said the title is his to lose after the withdrawal of defending champion Duncan Mugabe from Uganda, 2011 champion Zambian Edgar Kazembe and last year’s losing finalist Sheil Kotecha.