Venus powers to third round, Nishikori prevails, Federer, Murray also win

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Venus Williams

Venus Williams served her way into the third round of the Australian Open with a two-set victory over Swiss player, Stefanie Voegele, in the opening match at Rod Laver Arena, while Japanese, Kei Nishikori, outlasted Jeremy Chardy of France, in Hisense Arena.

In the first set, Voegels opened serving and won the point. She led until Venus got a break point for 30-40, claiming the first break. She consolidated by holding her serve with but one point lost. The Swiss player fought hard in the third game and saved a break point at 30-40. Both players had three advantage points in the long game but Venus prevailed to have the second service break and 3-0 lead. Venus lost her service game to reduce the tally and Voegels held to reduce the tally 3-2. From that stage, games were shorter as each player held serve until Venus broke her serve in the ninth to take the set 6-3.

The second set saw a more determined Voegels defending the awesome power of the Venus serve, which averaged 189 km/h. The American lady was denied three game points but succeeded in holding her serve. Venus also needed to overcome a deuce before taking the third game and then denied her opponent the game point before earning the first break of the set. Both players held serve easily. Serving to stay in the match at 2-5, Voegels lost the first point but recovered to reach 30-all. She faced match point at 30-40 and saved it. On the next advantage, and match point, Venus prevailed to win the set 6-2.

Jeremy Chardy served first but Kei took the game for a break that he consolidated to lead 2-0. Although Chardy fell behind in the crucial third game, his powerful serve saw him through. From then on, both players held serve until the Japanese star broke Chardy in the ninth to take the set 6-3. In the opening game of the second set, Nishikori saved two break points but lost as the lanky French player fought hard.

Kei replied in like fashion by breaking his opponent’s serve. Games went with serve but at two games apiece; the two players lost their serves before Nishikori went ahead 4-3 on his serve. In the ninth game, Kei faced break point bur cancelled it to hold. Chardy lost his serve quickly to concede the second set 6-4.

The Japanese star lost his serve the opening game of the third set but retaliated to level. The next three games went quickly with serve but Chardy had to struggle to hold serve and clinch the sixth game. Nishikori was forced to deuce before taking the seventh game and he took Chardy’s serve to lead 5-4. Serving for the match, Kei raced up to earn three match points at 40-0, but dropped one before sealing his victory six games to four and march into the third round.

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