Australian Open: Alexander Zverev, Novak Djokovic ease through first round | Sports| German football and major international sports news | DW | 15.01.2019
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Australian Open: Alexander Zverev, Novak Djokovic ease through first round

Alexander Zverev has cruised into the second round of the Australian Open. The German No. 4 seed started slow, but then made quick work of his Slovenian opponent to win in straight sets.

Alexander Zverev went down a break midway through the first set, but after that he never looked back, winning the next eight games to beat Aljaz Bedene a 6-4, 6-1, 6-4 to advance.

"It was the first match of the season and I was a little bit sloppy, I was a little bit slowish and I was down a break. It was a wake-up call, better get going," the winner of the season-ending ATP Finals said in the post-match, on-court interview. "I did play really well I thought after that and I'm happy to be through."

The 21-year-old Zverev's next opponent is to be Jeremy Chardy of France.

Zverev's older brother Mischa, 31, didn't fare as well, losing 7-5, 7-6 (9-7), 6-4 to Alexei Popyrin of Australia. Another German, Philip Kohlschreiber, also got through the first round, defeating Li Zhe of China 6-2, 6-2, 6-4.

Later on Tuesday, world No. 1 Novak Djokovic needed just over two hours to beat American qualifier Mitchell Krueger in straight-sets 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 in the Rod Laver Arena. The Serbian now moves on to face Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, whom he beat for his first Grand Slam title.

"I have a tremendous respect for Jo ... We played here in our first Grand Slam final back in 2008, 11 years ago and we're going to face each other again hopefully on this court and I really, really look forward to it," Djokovic said.

Serena coasts

On the women's side, Serena Williams, who is bidding for a 24th Grand Slam singles title, also coasted through the first round, dismantling Germany's Tatjana Maria 6-0, 6-2 in just 49 minutes.

Other notable results: 

Men's draw, first round (seedings in parentheses)

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, France, def. Martin Klizan, Slovakia, 6-4, 6-4, 7-6 (5).

Denis Shapovalov (25), Canada, def. Pablo Andujar, Spain, 6-2,
6-3, 7-6 (3). 

David Goffin (21), Belgium, def. Christian Garin, Chile, 6-0, 6-2,

Kei Nishikori (8), Japan, def. Kamil Majchrzak, Poland, 3-6, 6-7
(6), 6-0, 6-2, 3-0, ret.

Jeremy Chardy, France, def. Ugo Humbert, France, 3-6, 7-6 (6),
6-4, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (6).

Stan Wawrinka, Switzerland, def. Ernests Gulbis, Latvia, 3-6, 3-1,

Milos Raonic (16), Canada, def. Nick Kyrgios, Australia, 6-4, 7-6
(5), 6-4.

Women's draw, first round

Simona Halep (1), Romania, def. Kaia Kanepi, Estonia, 6-7 (2),
6-4, 6-2.

Venus Williams, United States, def. Mihaela Buzarnescu (25),
Romania, 6-7 (3), 7-6 (3), 6-2.

Eugenie Bouchard, Canada, def. Shuai Peng, China, 6-2, 6-1.

Johanna Konta, Britain, def. Ajla Tomljanovic, Australia, 7-6 (4),
2-6, 7-6 (7).

Garbine Muguruza (18), Spain, def. Saisai Zheng, China, 6-2, 6-3.

Karolina Pliskova (7), Czech Republic, def. Karolina Muchova,
Czech Republic, 6-3, 6-2.

Laura Siegemund, Germany, def. Victoria Azarenka, Belarus, 6-7
(5), 6-4, 6-2.

Anastasija Sevastova (13), Latvia, def. Mona Barthel, Germany,
6-3, 6-1.

Madison Keys (17), United States, def. Destanee Aiava, Australia,
6-2, 6-2.

Kristyna Pliskova, Czech Republic, def. Anna Blinkova, Russia, 7-6
(2), 2-6, 6-2.  

pfd/em (AP, dpa, Reuters)