British tennis star Emma Raducanu has won her first match since April following a lengthy injury lay-off.
The 2021 US Open winner beat Elena-Gabriela Ruse in three sets in the first round of the ASB Classic in Auckland.
Raducanu, 21, who had slipped to 301st in the world rankings, survived a fightback from the Romanian qualifier to progress 6-3 4-6 7-5 in two hours and 27 minutes.
The former British number one played only nine matches in 2023, as she missed eight months of action following operations on both wrists and an ankle.
Raducanu will play second seed Elina Svitolina in the last 16 and said she was “grateful to be able to move my body and not be bedridden or in a wheelchair.
After Raducanu took the first set in just 37 minutes, Ruse – the world number 134 – fought back to win the second.