Kvitova and Sharapova open with impressive wins at the Australian Open
Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova and
former world No 1 Maria Sharapova both posted comfortable wins in
the opening round of the Australian Open.
Kvitova, the second seed in
Melbourne, cruised past Russian Vera Dushevina 6-2 6-0 on Rod Laver
Arena, while fourth seed Sharapova demolished Gisela Dulko 6-0 6-1.
Strong start: Maria Sharapova
Dushevina made a strong start, holding serve and breaking Kvitova on her first opportunity to establish a 2-0 lead.
But once the Czech clicked into gear it turned into a one-sided contest as Kvitova rattled through the next 12 games to move into round two and a meeting with Spaniard Carla Suarez Navarro.
'After a slow start it was fine,' Kvitova, 21, said. 'But I can improve my serve for sure.'
'The score looks easy but it wasn't, the games were very close and I am glad I am through.'
Fourteenth seed Sabine Lisicki, a Wimbledon semi-finalist last year, survived a scare to advance courtesy of a 6-2 4-6 6-4 defeat of Swiss qualifier Stefanie Voegele.
Hot shot: Petra Kvitova fires a return against Vera Dushevina
Lisicki had the trainer on court, seemingly taking her pulse and blood pressure as she looked to be wilting in the 35 degree heat, but she still found the reserves to hit back from 4-2 down in the final set to come through.
Maria Kirilenko, seeded 27, ousted Jarmila Gajdosova, while there were also wins early on day two for 15th seed Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, 17th seed Dominika Cibulkova and Jelena Dokic.