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Tennis hot and tough in Melbourne

English.news.cn   2014-01-15 19:38:15

MELBOURNE, Jan. 15 (Xinhua) -- Extreme heat takes roll on players at the Australian Open as the temperature topped 43 degrees in Melbourne Park on Wednesday. Tennis is not only hot, but also tough for opponents of big names as Serena, Djokovic and Li Na.

Three-time defending champion reached the third round after beating Argentine Leonardo Mayer in straight sets. The second seed stayed on track for his fifth Australian Open title and extended his winning streak at the Melbourne Park to 23 matches with a 6-0, 6-4 and 6-4 victory.

The second round match was also the Serb's 26th consecutive win but Djokovic got a brief scare while serving at 3-0 in the first set when he turned over on his left ankle and tumbled to the court. But it appeared not so serious as he took the opening set in 22 minutes, just conceding eight points. [ Women's singles event top seed Serena Williams of United States took just 63 minutes to ease to a straight-sets victory against her Serb opponent Vesna Dolonc at 6-1, 6-2.

As the oldest player to ever rank No. 1, Williams went 78-4 and won 11 titles in 2013. She also beat Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azarenka back-to-back the week before last to win in Brisbane without dropping a single set.

Fourth Seed Li Na won 7-5 in the tiebreak of the second set to beat Swiss qualifier Belinda Bencic 6-0, 7-6(5). The two-time runner-up dominated the first set, playing only 22 minutes to win without dropping a game and conceding only 10 points.

But Bencic put up more of a challenge in the second set and broke Li twice to force a tiebreak. But Li prevailed to win 7-5.

The 2011 French Open defeated 16-year-old Ana Konjuh, the youngest player in the tournament, with dropping just two games in the first round. After Wednesday's victory over Bencic, the Chinese completed back-to-back wins over the two youngest players in the draw. Konjuh and Bencic shared the four junior majors in 2013.

In men's event, third-seeded Spaniard David Ferrer overcame a slow start to beat Frenchman Adrian Mannarino. Ferrer trailed 0-3 in the opening set but managed to force a tiebreak, in which he won by 7-2. He then lost the second set 5-7 before taking control back in the final two sets at 6-0, 6-3.

Editor: Fu Peng
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