Sydney - Former world number one Angelique Kerber says she
is looking for more confidence-boosting matches ahead of next week's Australian
Open after knocking Venus Williams out of the Sydney International.
The German overcame a first-set fade-out to beat the
American second seed 5-7, 6-3, 6-1 late Tuesday and continue her 2018 revival.
The two-time Grand Slam champion remains unbeaten in six
matches this year following last week's Hopman Cup mixed-teams campaign in
Perth and now meets Dominika Cibulkova in Thursday's quarter-final.
Kerber started 2017 ranked world number one but by the end
of the season had slumped to 21, and she headed into the Sydney event ranked
Now the left-hander is looking for a run of matches to
further restore her confidence heading into the year's opening Grand Slam
"Yes, not looking back anymore. I'm happy how the year
starts. I have been doing a lot of work," said the 29-year-old.
"I'm just looking forward to have a lot of matches
before going to Melbourne, and now I have another one.
"Let's see how many I will get. But this is actually
just a goal to playing matches and then going with a lot of confidence to
Kerber started the first set stronger and looked to have
Williams's measure with a 5-3 lead and two set points before the world number
Williams, the seven-times Grand Slam champion - a finalist
at the Australian Open last year - went on to take the opening set.
But Kerber fought back strong as Williams struggled with her
The German levelled the match and swept to a 5-0 lead in the
decider but Williams rallied again before she succumbed to the inevitable on
the fifth match point, when she sent a backhand return wide.