New Zealand tennis No.1 Marina Erakovic has been beaten in the first round of the main draw at the US$250,000 WTA tournament in Hong Kong.

The 28-year-old who entered the tournament ranked 119 in the world had won through the qualifying draw but was defeated by British player Heather Watson 7-5 7-6(9) in the first round of the main draw in a match which took just over two hours.

Watson managed a vital service break in the 11th game of the first set but it was the Kiwi who the lead in the second set surging ahead 4-1. However Watson showed plenty of resolve to come back and force the tiebreak where Erakovic saved a couple of match points and also had a set point.

Erakovic remains in the doubles draw where she is in the quarter-finals with Chinas Ling Zhang.