Clijsters, Nadal roll on, Jankovic falters
The Kim Clijsters express rolled on relentlessly on day four of the Australian Open as Vera Zvonareva stumbled briefly and Jelena Jankovic crashed out of the second round.sports Updated: Jan 20, 2011 23:17 IST
The Kim Clijsters express rolled on relentlessly on day four of the Australian Open as Vera Zvonareva stumbled briefly and Jelena Jankovic crashed out of the second round.
Tournament favourite and third seed Clijsters continued her impressive start to the year's first Grand Slam as she cleaned up Carla Suarez Navarro 6-1, 6-3, following her 6-0, 6-0 demolition of Dinara Safina in the first round.
However, second seed Zvonareva was pushed to the limit by Serbia's Bojana Jovanovski before recovering to win 1-6, 6-3, 6-1.
But there was to be no reprieve for former world number one Jelena Jankovic, who became the tournament's biggest casualty so far when she was beaten by China's Peng Shuai 7-6 (7/3), 6-3.
The seventh seed joined fellow Serb Ana Ivanovic on the sidelines after failing to deal with the consistency of her Chinese opponent, who now moves into an all-Asian third round clash against Japan's Ayumi Morita.
Meanwhile Clijsters sent a message on the court, then warned her rivals that she was fitter now than when she reached world number one in 2003 when she was just 20.
"I feel comfortable out there now. I'm strong enough to still be aggressive from even a little bit further behind (the baseline)," said the working mother.
Australia's fifth-seeded Samantha Stosur beat Russia's Vera Dushevina 6-3, 6-2 to book her place in the third round.
Israel's Shahar Peer, the tournament's 10th seed, made short work of Sorana Cirstea of Romania, winning 6-3, 6-2, while 13th seeded Russian Nadia Petrova ended the hopes of Australian Alicia Molik 6-4, 6-1. Czech Iveta Benesova beat Russia's Maria Kirilenko (18) 6-3, 6-1.
Nadal makes a swift kill
World No.1 Rafael Nadal stepped up his bid for a fourth straight Grand Slam title with a crushing win, as leading seeds Andy Murray and Robin Soderling had trouble-free passage at the Australian Open on Thursday.
Nadal overran American qualifier Ryan Sweeting 6-2, 6-1, 6-1 to set up an intriguing third round match with exciting Australian teenager Bernard Tomic. Fourth seed Soderling, too, did not drop a set in disposing of Gilles Muller of Luxembourg, 6-3, 7-6 (7/1), 6-1.
British fifth seed Murray easily cruised with a 6-1, 6-3, 6-3 win over Illya Marchenko of Ukraine to also progress to the last 32.