Australian Open

Venus thrashes Safarova

2010-01-19 11:53
Venus Williams (AP)

Melbourne - Venus Williams warmed-up for another tilt at the elusive Australian Open title Tuesday with a 6-2, 6-2 first round thrashing of Czech Lucie Safarova.

Safarova was expected to provide a tough opening challenge but the tall American was in imperious form as she raced to an easy win in just 72 minutes, 60 seconds faster than sister Serena took to beat Urszula Radwanska earlier.

"I was playing a really talented player -- everyone knows how well Lucie can hit the ball," Williams said.

"She definitely gets a lot of pace, and she's left-handed. We've had some tough matches in the past.

"I just wanted to stay focused and execute my game -- a great way to start."

Williams, whose best finish at the Australian Open was runner-up to Serena in 2003, looked in great shape physically as she broke Safarova twice in the first set and three times in the second.

The seven-time Grand Slam champion returned brilliantly throughout, putting enormous pressure on Safarova's second serve, which crumbled badly as a result.

And although Williams' first serve misfired badly with only a 47 percent success rate, Safarova only had five break point chances in the match, converting just one of those.

The sixth seed has kept a low profile heading into the 2010 tournament with most of the attention going to Belgians Kim Clijsters and Justine Henin.

But if that worries Venus she wasn't showing it.

"I don't think about the headlines," she said.

"My whole life has been a headline, and I've never in my career aimed to get headlines.

"I aim to win matches. That's pretty much my aim here -- to win matches."

Against Safarova she displayed the form that should see her make up for the disappointment of 2009, when she lost in the second round to unseeded Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro.

She said she was delighted to have been able to play as well as she did against Safarova in her first competitive match of the year.

"I've obviously been working hard in practice and executing in practice isn't as easy as doing it in a match," she said.

"But I think definitely -- I mean, my years of experience playing on tour definitely helps a lot with knowing how to come back and try to hopefully play well every time."

Results from day two of the Australian Open at Melbourne Park on Tuesday (x denotes seeding):

Men's singles

1st round

Jarkko Nieminen (FIN) bt Nick Lindahl (AUS) 6-2, 7-5, 6-4
Tomas Berdych (CZE x21) bt Robin Haase (NED) 6-0, 6-3, 6-3
Evgeny Korolev (KAZ) bt Daniel Brands (GER) 6-2, 7-5, 7-5
Igor Kunitysn (RUS) bt Jose Acasuso (ARG) 6-1, 2-6, 6-4, 6-2
Louk Sorenson (IRL) bt Lu Yen-Hsun (TPE) 6-4, 3-6, 6-2, 6-1
Marin Cilic (CRO x14) bt Fabrice Santoro (FRA) 7-5, 7-5, 6-3
Gael Monfils (FRA x12) bt Matthew Ebden (AUS) 6-4, 6-4, 6-4
Nikolay Davydenko (RUS x6) bt Dieter Kindlmann (GER) 6-1, 6-0, 6-3
Fernando Verdasco (ESP x9) bt Carsten Ball (AUS) 6-7 (4/7), 7-6 (7/1), 7-5, 6-2
Feliciano Lopez (ESP) bt Pablo Cuevas (URU) 6-1, 6-4, 7-5
Stanislas Wawrinka (SUI x19) bt Guillermo Garica-Lopez (ESP) 6-3, 6-3, 6-2
Thomaz Bellucci (BRA) bt Teimuraz Gabashvilli (RUS) 6-3, 7-5, 4-6, 6-4
Marsel Ilhan (TUR) bt Sebastien Grosjean (FRA) 6-4, 6-4, 7-5
John Isner (USA x33) bt Andreas Seppi (ITA) 6-3, 6-3, 3-6, 5-7, 6-4
Ivan Sergeyev (UKR) bt Dudi Sela (ISR) 6-3, 7-6 (7/3), 4-6, 7-6 (10/8)
Viktor Troicki (SRB x29) bt Nicolas Lapentti (ECU) 4-6, 6-3, 6-1, 6-3
Rainer Schuettler (GER) bt Sam Querrey (USA x25) 6-3, 2-6, 6-4, 6-3
James Blake (USA) bt Arnaud Clement (FRA) 7-5, 7-5, 6-2
Lukasz Kubot (POL) bt Mischa Zverev (GER) 6-3, 6-3, 6-3
Julien Benneteau (FRA) bt David Guez (FRA) 0-6, 6-4, 7-6 (7/4), 7-6 (7/2)
Philipp Kohlschreiber (GER x27) bt Horacio Zeballos (ARG) 6-1, 7-5, 6-1
Marc Gicquel (FRA) bt Simone Bolelli (ITA) 7-6 (7/2), 7-6 (7/3), 6-3
Santiago Giraldo (COL) bt Tommy Robredo (ESP x16) 6-4, 6-2, 6-2
Florent Serra (FRA) bt Jurgen Melzer (AUT x28) 6-1, 6-7 (3/7), 6-4, 4-6, 6-3
Roger Federer (SUI x1) bt Igor Andreev (RUS) 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7/2), 6-0
Marcel Granollers (ESP) bt Robin Soderling (SWE x8) 5-7, 2-6, 6-4, 6-4, 6-2
David Ferrer (ESP x17) bt Frederico Gil (POR) 6-0, 6-0, 2-0 (retired)
Juan Monaco (ARG x30) bt Ernests Gulbis (LAT) 6-3, 7-6 (7/5), 6-1
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA x10) bt Sergiy Stakhovsky (UKR) 6-3, 6-4, 6-4
Illya Marchenko (UKR) by Carlos Moya (ESP) 7-6 (7/2), 7-5, 6-3
Marcos Baghdatis (CYP) bt Paolo Lorenzi (ITA) 6-2, 6-4, 6-4
Tommy Haas (GER x18) bt Simon Greul (GER) 6-7 (5-7), 6-4, 6-2, 6-1
Antonio Veic (CRO) bt Daniel Koellerer (AUT) 6-4, 3-6, 6-7 (3/7), 6-1, 6-4
Stefan Koubek (AUT) bt Rajeev Ram (USA) 4-6, 6-3, 5-7, 6-1, 6-3
Alejandro Falla (COL) bt Marcos Daniel (BRA) 7-5, 6-3, 6-1
Taylor Dent (USA) bt Fabio Fognini (ITA) 6-1, 6-3, 6-3
Janko Tipsarevic (SRB) bt Ryan Harrison (USA) 6-2, 6-4, 7-6 (7-3)
Michael Llodra (FRA) bt Martin Vassallo Arguello (ARG) 6-3, 7-5, 6-4
Albert Montanes (ESP x31) bt Oscar Hernandez (ESP) 7-6 (7/5), 2-2 (retired)
Lleyton Hewitt (AUS x22) bt Ricardo Hocevar (BRA) 6-1, 6-2, 6-3
Ivan Dodig (CRO) bt Juan Carlos Ferrero (ESP x23) 2-6, 1-6, 6-4, 6-1, 6-1
Jan Hajek (CZE) bt Robby Ginepri (USA) 7-6 (7/2), 7-5, 6-1

Women's singles

1st round

Ana Ivanovic (SRB x20) bt Shenay Perry (USA) 6-2, 6-3
Sandra Zahlavova (CZE) bt Coco Vandeweghe (USA) 6-0, 6-1
Aravane Rezai (FRA x26) bt Sania Mirza (IND) 6-4, 6-2
Marion Bartoli (FRA x11) bt Rossana De Los Rios (PAR) 6-4, 6-1
Ekaterina Makarova (RUS) bt Virginie Razzano (FRA x18) 6-2, 6-3
Angelique Kerber (GER) bt Olga Govortsova (BLR) 6-3, 6-3
Nadia Petrova (RUS x19) bt Edina Gallovits (ROU) 6-3, 6-4
Katie O'Brien (GBR) bt Patricia Mayr (AUT) 6-3, 6-3
Sara Errani (ITA) bt Klara Zakopalova (CZE) 6-2, 7-6 (7/5)
Samantha Stosur (AUS x13) bt Han Xinyun (CHN) 6-1, 3-6, 6-2
Tamarine Tanasugarn (THA) bt Sesil Karatantcheva (KAZ) 6-1, 7-6 (7/0)
Polona Hercog (SLO) bt Yuliana Fedak (UKR) 6-4, 6-0
Barbora Zahlavova Strycova (CZE) bt Regina Kulikova (RUS) 7-6 (7/5), 6-7 (10/12), 6-3
Serena Williams (USA x1) bt Urszula Radwanska (POL) 6-2, 6-1
Vania King (USA) bt Dominika Cibulkova (SVK x23) 6-3, 6-7 (5/7), 7-5
Casey Dellacqua (AUS) bt Anastasiya Yakimova (BLR) 6-2, 3-6, 6-4
Sorana Cirstea (ROM) bt Olivia Rogowska (AUS) 6-3, 2-6, 6-2
Kaia Kanepi (EST) bt Chan Yung-Jan (TPE) 7-6 (7/4), 6-2
Carla Suarez Navarro (ESP x32) bt Ayumi Morita (JPN) 7-5, 6-4
Alona Bondarenko (UKR x31) bt Kathrin Woerle (GER) 6-2, 6-2
Kristina Barrois (GER) bt Akgul Amanmuradova (UZB) 6-0, 7-6 (8/6)
Roberta Vinci (ITA) bt Anna-Lena Groenefeld (GER) 7-5, 6-4
Karolina Sprem (CRO) bt Anabel Medina Garrigues (ESP x25) 6-3, 6-2
Andrea Petkovic (GER) bt Renata Voracova (CZE) 6-2, 6-4
Agnieszka Radwanska (POL x10) bt Tatjana Malek (GER) 6-1, 6-0
Jelena Jankovic (SRB x8) bt Monica Niculescu (ROM) 6-4, 6-0
Venus Williams (USA x6) bt Lucie Safarova (CZE) 6-2, 6-2
Petra Kvitova (CZE) bt Jill Craybas (USA) 6-1, 7-5
Alla Kudryavtseva (RUS) bt Melanie Oudin (USA) 3-6, 7-5, 7-5

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