Pe’er falls in Australian Open


MELBOURNE, Australia (JTA) — Israeli tennis star Shahar Pe’er lost in the first round of the Australian Open.

Pe’er, the runner-up in the women’s doubles last year, fell Monday to the 11th seed, Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki, 6-3, 6-2. Israel’s top female player was a quarterfinalist in the 2007 tournament.

Fears that Pe’er, 21, would face pro-Palestinian protesters because of the war in Gaza, as happened at a tournament in New Zealand last week, were unfounded.

She had refuted calls for her withdrawal from the ASB Classic in Auckland over the war in Gaza and received extra security.

Israel’s top male player, Dudi Sela, plays Tuesday. In doubles Yoni Erlich, who won the title last year with Andy Ram, is not competing due to injury.

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