Cape Town - American fifth seed Sloane Stephens edged into the Australian Open fourth round Friday after outlasting 31st seed Petra Martic of Croatia in a battle of attrition at Melbourne Park.
Former US Open champion Stephens, a semi-finalist Down Under in 2013, won 7-6 (8/6) 7-6 (7/5) to set up a last 16 clash with Russia's Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.
"It was such a good match," the 25-year-old said. "She's a great player, it was a tough match. I'm just really happy to be playing some good tennis."