Australian Open: Kerber, Kvitova, Bencic and Anisimova advance


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Australian Open: Kerber, Kvitova, Bencic and Anisimova advance

The 2nd seed and 2016 Australian Open champion Angelique Kerber has scored her 100th Grand Slam win and reached the third round here for the eighth time after a comfortable 6-2, 6-3 win over a qualifier Beatriz Haddad Maia.

It was another excellent performance from the last year's semi-finalist, losing nine points on serve and facing just one break point in the entire match. The Brazilian failed to convert it and she suffered three breaks from 13 opportunities she gave to Kerber, hitting the exit door after 81 minutes.

Angelique grabbed the fifth break chance in the second game when Beatriz's drop shot failed to reach the net and there was even longer game awaiting at 4-1 for the German, with Haddad Maia repelling no less than six break opportunities to within one break deficit.

Still, she sprayed a forehand error to suffer another break in game eight, handing the opener to her rival who had to work harder in set number two, especially after facing a break point at 1-1. Haddad Maia wasted her chance when the forehand landed long and despite a much better effort than in the opening set she got broken in game eight after another loose forehand, allowing Kerber to cross the finish line in the following game for a milestone Grand Slam win.

A former College tennis star Danielle Collins has lost the first five Grand Slam matches she played although things are looking much brighter here in Melbourne, toppling Sachia Vickery 6-3, 7-5 in 72 minutes to move into the third round.

Danielle was the more aggressive player on the court and despite losing serve twice she was in front all the time, taking the opening set with a single break and before a much tighter second set where Vickery gave her best to prolong the match before giving her serve away in the worst moment.

The 20-year-old Kimberly Birrell is playing only the second Grand Slam tournament and she has taken the best from it so far, defeating the 29th seed Donna Vekic 6-4, 4-6, 6-1 in just under two hours. Kimberly saved her best tennis for the deciding set, losing only four points on serve while scoring two breaks on the other hand to close the match in style and reach the last 32.

The 8th seed and Sydney champion Petra Kvitova had to spend just 69 minutes on the court, dismantling Irina-Camelia Begu 6-1, 6-3 to book the place in the third round at Melbourne Park for the first time since 2015. The Czech struggled a little bit on serve however the return game was there to propel her towards the win, converting all five chances she created to have the upper hand and stay on the course for her best result in Melbourne, never playing in the final here before.

The 11th seed Aryna Sabalenka is through as well, taking down Katie Boulter 6-3, 6-4 in 73 minutes after a great performance on serve and three breaks scored, imposing her powerful strokes to leave the Brit behind and march into the third round. Second round results:

Amanda Anisimova (USA) vs [24]Lesia Tsurenko (UKR) 6-0 6-2
Danielle Collins (USA) vs Sachia Vickery (USA) 6-3 7-5
[WC]Kimberly Birrell (AUS) vs [29]Donna Vekic (CRO) 6-4 4-6 6-1
[11]Aryna Sabalenka (BLR) vs Katie Boulter (GBR) 6-3 6-4
Belinda Bencic (SUI) vs Yulia Putintseva (KAZ) 7-5 4-6 6-2
[8]Petra Kvitova (CZE) vs Irina-Camelia Begu (ROU) 6-1 6-3
[2]Angelique Kerber (GER) vs [Q]Beatriz Haddad Maria (BRA) 6-2 6-3