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Australian Open: Venus Williams Thrashed By Belinda Bencic

Australian Open: Venus Williams Thrashed By Belinda Bencic

Serena Williams withdrew from the event due to maternity, but the 2017 finalist Venus was handed a brutal draw that turned deadly when she was upset by the Williams-killer Belinda Bencic 6-3, 7-5 in first-round action.

Venus Williams was knocked out of the Australian Open on Monday, one of seven American women eliminated on opening day.

Now ranked 78th, Bencic teamed up with Roger Federer to win the Hopman Cup for Switzerland in the lead-up and was thrilled to have the defending champion's parents watching from her players' box as she worked over Williams in less than two hours.

"I think she played well", Venus Williams said. "Why should I feel uncomfortable because the court is ill-prepared?"

"You really have to be on the limit of your game here!"

But Bencic, 17 years Venus Williams's junior, is a remarkable talent, and she played a poised and aggressive match on Monday to become one of the few to have defeated both Williams sisters in singles (she upset Serena Williams in the final of the Rogers Cup in 2015 before experiencing injury issues).

"It's fantastic, when I was a little girl, I was watching them on TV". "I know how hard I'm working. coming to Australia I'm ready for every match, every player. I'm just happy to be on court".

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With Serena skipping the event because the record 23-time grand slam victor isn't ready to return to tournament play four months after giving birth to a first child, it means no Williams sister is in the second round of a major for the first time since 1997. "This is a new year". I'm going through a tough time. The 25-year-old American has yet to win a match this year, having lost in the first round in Auckland to Germany's Peter Gojowczyk in his only previous appearance in 2018.

Three other Americans went out in earlier matches, with 10th-seeded CoCo Vandeweghe losing to Timea Babos 7-6 (4), 6-2, 12th-seeded Julia Goerges extended her winning streak to 15 matches with a 6-4, 6-4 win over Sofia Kenin, and No. 19 Magdalena Rybarikova beating Taylor Townsend 6-0, 7-5.

It all amounted to a big shift in mood from the last Grand Slam tournament: a shift best represented by Stephens' coach, Kamau Murray, normally a gifted and expansive communicator who walked out of Margaret Court Arena wearing a pained expression before delivering a series of remarkably curt answers to a series of questions. "I did the best that I could". Ostapenko is the first big name through to the second round. You know, it's a long journey.

Stephens hasn't won a tour-level match since her Grand Slam breakthrough triumph at the U.S. Open a year ago, a losing streak of eight matches. Her strong play seems to be continuing right into play at the Australian Open.

Nadal drew as much attention for his attire, going back to a sleeveless look for the first time in almost a decade.

Even though her length and athleticism makes her risky every time she takes the court, we don't know what kind of toll Sjogren's Syndrome - the autoimmune disorder she was diagnosed with in 2011 - has taken on her body. "I never thought I'd get a chance to play them". No. 16 John Isner lost in four sets to Australian Matt Edben.

Ryan Harrison beat Dudi Sela in five sets and qualifier Mackenzie McDonald bucked the trend for the Americans. I've been playing that level now for a while.


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