Top seeded holder Iga Swiatek began her spring clay campaign with a 6-3, 6-4 defeat of Elise Mertens as the Pole bids for a third straight title at the WTA Stuttgart clay event.

The German stop is the first major waypoint for women on the road to Roland Garros, with Swiatek now a perfect 9-0 at the venue.

The 2022 and 2023 titleholder stepped onto clay for the first time since lifting a third French Open title last June, advancing to the quarter-finals in 93 minutes over her Belgian opponent.

Swiatek will next play Britain’s Emma Raducanu who easily beat Czech teen prodigy Linda Noskova.

Main photo:- Iga Swiatek winning in Stuttgart today – by