The Last: Shaky Sabalenka in Australian Open 3rd Round – WSB-TV Channel 2

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MELBOURNE, Australia – (AP) – The latest Thursday news from the Australian Open tennis tournament (all times local):

3:05 p.m.

Second-seeded Aryna Sabalenka shrugged off a shaky serve and 19 double faults to beat Wang Xinyu 1-6, 6-4, 6-2 and advance to the third round of the Australian Open.

Sabalenka double faulted 12 times in the first set, including nine in her first two service games as she trailed 3-0 in less than 15 minutes.

But she cleared up after a stint in the locker room after the first set, and regained her form.

The US Open and Wimbledon semi-finalist said she had ‘a lot of experience in the no-serve game’, and she kept telling herself she had enough other shots to win “even if you cannot serve”.

Sabalenka made a stuttering start to 2022, with his service issues including 39 combined double faults contributing to first-round losses at tune-up events in Adelaide.

Sabalenka will face No. 31 seed Marketa Vondrousova in the next round.

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1 p.m.

No. 3 Garbiñe Muguruza became the highest-ranked player to lose a match at this year’s Australian Open, bounced back in the second round by Alize Cornet 6-3, 6-3.

Muguruza is a two-time Grand Slam champion and a Melbourne Park runner-up in 2020.

But his game was filled with shaky returns and numerous errors. She committed 33 unforced errors, more than double Cornet’s 16.

Muguruza never managed to earn a single break point against 12.

Cornet, ranked 61st, is participating in her 63rd career Grand Slam tournament, the last 60 in a row. She has never made it past the fourth round of a major tournament.

There was another upset in the second round for the women when 19-year-old Clara Tauson knocked out No. 6 seed Anett Kontaveit 6-2, 6-3.

Tauson reached the third round for the first time in a major tournament.

Kontaveit lost to Muguruza in the 2021 WTA Season Finals title match.

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12:30 p.m.

Dan Evans advanced to the third round at Melbourne Park because Arthur Rinderknech pulled out with an injured wrist before they were supposed to face off.

If Andy Murray is able to win his second-round match later on Thursday, it would only be the second time in the last 20 years that more than one Brit has advanced to the third round of the Australian Open.

The only other instance from this period came in 2017, when Murray and Evans did it.

Evans, 31, reached the fourth round that year, the only time he has gone this far in the first Grand Slam tournament of the year.

On Saturday, the No. 24 seed Evans will face No. 9 Felix Auger-Aliassime or Alejandro Davidovich Fokina.

Rinderknech, a 26-year-old Frenchman ranked 48th, has never made it past the second round of a Grand Slam tournament.

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11:15 a.m.

Two-time Grand Slam champion Garbiñe Muguruza kicks off Day 4 at Melbourne Park, facing Alize Cornet at the Rod Laver Arena in the second round under cloudless skies.

Muguruza was a runner-up at the 2020 Australian Open and is ranked third this year.

Other top players who will play on Thursday include second seed Aryna Sabalenka and defending US Open champion Emma Raducanu.

The most anticipated men’s match takes place at night: 2021 US Open champion and Australian Open runner-up Daniil Medvedev versus entertaining Aussie crowd favorite Nick Kyrgios.

Also on the program is three-time major champion Andy Murray, who seemed destined to retire after losing at the 2019 Australian Open but resumed his career after receiving an artificial hip.

Murray’s five-set victory in the first round was his first win at Melbourne Park since 2017 and he now faces Japanese qualifier Taro Daniel.

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More AP Tennis: https://apnews.com/hub/tennis and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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