Thursday, 15 November, 2018

Ashleigh Barty out to join Aussie Open party

Romania's Simona Halep hits a shot during a practice sess Tennis- Australian Open- Melbourne Park Melbourne Australia
Rita Gibson | 16 January, 2018, 05:48

However, the former world number one insisted he is far from favourite to take out the 106th Australian Open.

The Bulgarian third seed, a semifinalist at Melbourne Park a year ago, barely got out of first gear as he displayed his considerable range of skills to oust his Austrian opponent in just 98 minutes on Rod Laver Arena.

"It means so much to me", Bencic told BBC Radio 5 live.

"I knew I had to play really aggressive and stay very consistent".

Nadal, who is gunning for a 17th major title but only his second Australian Open crown, was hampered by a knee injury at the tail-end of the 2017 season.

Meanwhile, it was a bad day for American women in the singles as Venus Williams, Coco Vandeweghe and Sloane Stephens were all knocked out in the first round.

"I've showed on multiple occasions over the year that I can play and beat the best guys in the world", Zverev said.

The result was never in doubt here, though, and in truth it was the flawless matchup for the 16-time Grand Slam champion.

The 12-time major victor is in the same quarter as No. 4 Alexander Zverev, No. 5 Dominic Thiem and 2014 champion Stan Wawrinka, who confirmed Saturday he'd return at Melbourne Park from his own six-month layoff following surgery on his left knee.

The first Grand Slam of the year, the Australian Open commenced in Melbourne today with the very best of the best in action, fighting it out on the court for the highest honours.

Clinical Manchester United leave Paul Lambert with uphill task at Stoke
The France forward didn't hesitate in meeting it with a first-time shot that bent beyond the grasp of Stoke goalkeeper Jack Butland.

Toni has departed to focus on his nephew's tennis academy but Nadal said their relationship remained intimate and "easy". The 49th-ranked Edmund, who lost to 11th seeded Anderson in five sets in the third round at last year's French Open, toughed out a 6-7 (4/7), 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 win in nearly four hours.

It was a trickier first outing for sixth seed Marin Cilic, who dropped a set to Vasek Pospisil before coming through 6-2 6-2 4-6 7-6 (7/5).

"[In the off-season] I just work".

'Straight after London I had to stop for a while and then I worked step-by-step that's why I could not go to Brisbane because I started a little bit slower than usual and we wanted to do things the right way for this season again.

"I can't thank him enough for all the things".

"I was disappointed I couldn't make it in Brisbane".

However, they had not done their research as Kyrgios responded with: "I don't think she was there".

Federer, who begins his title defence on Tuesday, 16 January, against Slovenian Aljaz Bedene, is looking to win the first few rounds and get into his stride so as to give him a viable chance to win the title again.

Nadal was feeling out his body and his game more than his opponent, examining his forehand and serve, ticking off his court coverage and how his grumbly knee would cope.

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