Three-time champion Safarova overcomes Kucova in Prague

Getty Images

Defending champion Lucie Safarova came from a set down to beat Kristina Kucova in the first round of the Prague Open on Tuesday.

Safarova, a three-time winner of the clay-court event in her homeland, will face compatriot Kristyna Pliskova in round two after battling past Kucova 3-6 7-5 6-3.

Kucova broke twice in the first set to take an unexpected advantage, but Safarova served nine aces as she fought back to set up a meeting with Pliskova, who ousted wildcard Jelena Jankovic 6-4 6-4.

After top seed Karolina Pliskova tumbled out at the hands of Camila Giorgi on Monday, there was more straightforward progress for the other main contenders a day later.

Former world number one Caroline Wozniacki won nine straight games to get off to a blistering start against Misaki Doi before seeing out a 6-0 7-5 success.

Third seed Barbora Strycova also put a bagel on the board as she overcame Julia Goerges 6-4 6-0 while last year's runner-up Sam Stosur eased past Evgeniya Rodina 6-2 6-3.

Meanwhile, sixth seed Zhang Shuai was dumped out 6-0 6-3 by Mona Barthel and there were also wins for Beatriz Haddad Maia, Natalia Vikhlyantseva, Katerina Siniakova, Jelena Ostapenko, Ana Konjuh and 2015 losing finalist Lucie Hradecka.