There’s always a crowd favourite in any sport and in the world of women’s tennis, Maria Sharapova is undoubtedly one of the most popular players the game has ever seen. With her past (substance abuse ban) and with her being away from the game since a while, it’s always fun to watch her in action when the major tournaments get underway.
Talking about major tournaments, the first of four Grand Slams of the year has begun, with the 2019 Australian Open kicking off at Melbourne Park, Australia on 14th January 2019. Players return fresh for the new year after a couple of weeks off, and Sharapova is one such player who looks the freshest of them all.
Earlier today, the American had her Round 2 match against Sweden’s Rebecca Peterson and it turned out to be no problem at all for Sharapova. On Day 1 of the 2019 Australian Open, Sharapova powered past UK’s Harriet Dart 6-0, 6-0, refusing to lose even a single game. Today was a similar story.
She maintained that aggression and managed another victory, seeded #30 in this tournament. Now we all know that Sharapova is better than being ranked 30th in a Grand Slam and we hope she can continue this tournament the way she has begun. Today, she beat Peterson 6-2, 6-1 in a match that last for 1 hour and 11 minutes. She has now dropped just 3 games in the tournament so far.
2018 wasn’t a great year for the top seeded players in tennis, especially in the women’s circuit. All four Slams of the year saw the top seeded women players busting out of contention early, giving the chance to many lower ranked players to step up their game and walk away as champion.
However, 2019 seems to be a fair bit different as we haven’t seen any early exits among the top players, having reached the end of three days of play so far. The worst elimination until now was probably that of #9 seed Kiki Bertens, who lost her 2nd Round game earlier today.
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 16, 2019
Overall, it was another good day of play in Melbourne, wherein all the top seeds progressed, including straight set victories for the likes of Angelique Kerber, Caroline Wozniacki, Roger Federer and others. It wasn’t the best of days for Indian tennis fans, as the Asian Games medal winner pair of Bopanna/Sharan were knocked out while the veteran Leander Paes lost his Men’s Doubles game.