Sharapova, Federer, Wozniach win opening day of Australian Open

08:28, January 18, 2011      

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Roger Federer of Switzerland hits a shot to Lukas Lacko of Slovakia during their first round men's single match at the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne, Australia, Jan 17, 2011. Federer won 3-0. (Xinhua/Meng Yongmin)

American Sam Querrey and Russian Nikolay Davydenko crashed out of Australian Open in opening session on Monday, while Roger Federer, Maria Sharapova, Caroline Wozniacki, Venus Williams, Justine Henin and Li Na advanced to the second round of the tournament.

American 18th seed Querrey slumped to a 5-7, 6-2, 3-6, 6-1, 8-6 defeat against Poland's Lukasz Kubot following a grueling five- setter on Monday, while 23rd seed Davydenko was ousted by German Florian Mayer 6-3 4-6 7-6 (7/4) 6-4.

"It is not a good result for me here, first round to lose against Mayer here," Davydenko told reporters after the match. "I needed to defend quarter-final, my ranking will be maybe 40."

Meanwhile, defending champion Swiss Federer laid down a marker with a classy 6-1 6-1 6-3 victory over Slovakia's Lukas Lacko in 84 minutes at Rod Laver Arena.

"I thought I played great," Federer told reporters. "I thought it was a good match. I don't think he played too bad himself. I saw some talent in him and that's why I was really happy I chose the tactic early on to pressure him. That it worked was great and I'm obviously very happy."

In his bid for a record 17th Grand Slam title, Federer will take on French Gilles Simon in the second round of the tournament.

The former No. 1-ranked Sharapova ended up with a relatively comfortable 6-1, 6-3 win over Thai veteran Tamarine Tanasugarn in the first match. In the second round, Sharapova will compete with France's Virginie Razzano.

Caroline Wozniacki, playing her first Grand Slam as World No.1, overcame Argentine Gisela Dulko 6-3 6-4. She will face American player Vania King, the world number 88, in the second round.

After recovering from leg injury, American Venus Williams, winner of seven Grand Slam singles titles is back and she looks like she means the business. The world No. 5 skipped easily into the second round with a straight forward 6-3, 6-2 win over Italian Sara Errani.

Williams dropped her serve once, and racked up 18 unforced errors. However, in her defense, Venus will point to 33 clean winners, eight aces and five break points of her own converted.

"I think I was able to keep my errors pretty low," Venus told reporters. "It definitely felt good today to go out there and play pretty clean tennis."

Williams will take on Sandra Zahlavova of the Czech Republic in second round.

In other results, former No. 1 Justine Henin spent two hours and 12 minutes to subdue an Indian Sania Mirza 5-7, 6-3, 6-1 in the first round.

Ninth seed Chinese Li Na saw off determined Swede Sofia Arvidsson in straight sets, 6-1, 7-5 in one hour and 24 minutes, to advance to the second round. Li will play World No. 108 Russian Evgeniya Rodina in her next match.

In addition, British No. 1 Elena Baltacha fought back from a set down to beat American Jamie Hampton 3-6, 6-4, 7-5 to set up a date with 11th seed Justine Henin in the second round.

Meanwhile, top-seeded Spanish Rafael Nadal, who will be seeking his fourth straight Grand Slam title after winning the French Open, Wimbledon and the U.S. Open last year, has an opening-round match scheduled for Tuesday against Brazilian Marcos Daniel.

Source: Xinhua
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