Australian Open: Rublev tames Thiem, Sabalenka and Garcia stroll as Melbourne sizzles


Fifth seed Andrey Rublev introduced an finish to the Australian Open marketing campaign of former Grand Slam champion Dominic Thiem within the opening spherical on Tuesday when he overpowered the Austrian 6-3 6-4 6-2 on a sweltering John Cain Area.

Thiem, a finalist at Melbourne Park and U.S. Open champion in 2020, is on the comeback path after a wrist harm and was capable of compete solely to a sure extent towards the ability of the rangy Russian.

In a match studded with top quality rallies between the 2 baseliners, Rublev broke for a 5-3 lead within the opening set, for 5-4 within the second and, after an enormous roar, for 2-1 within the third.

Thiem was merely unable to get a foothold within the contest and the 25-year-old Rublev, a quarter-finalist on the Australian Open in 2021, served out for the match after little greater than two hours on courtroom.

“We are really good friends and I know he is going through not so easy times … and I hope he can get back to the level he belongs as fast as possible,” Rublev mentioned of the previous world quantity three.

“It’s super hot today so I’m super happy I was able to win in straight sets and save some energy for the next match.

“The warmer it’s, the harder it’s to make the suitable selections, the harder to maneuver. Once you begin to suppose the opposite man can also be feeling the identical, it is a bit simpler.”

Rublev, like all Russian and Belarusian players, is competing at the tournament without national affiliation as a result of last year’s invasion of Ukraine.

Tennis Australia on Tuesday morning banned fans from bringing flags of either nation into the Melbourne Park precinct after a Russian tricolour was hung on a bush next to a court where Ukrainian Kateryna Baindl was playing on Monday.

EXTREME HEAT

The heat was the other main topic of conversation on the second day of the championships as temperatures soared towards a forecast high of 36 degrees Celsius (96.8°F).

Play was suspended on the outside courts shortly after 2 p.m. (0300 GMT) local time as the tournament’s Extreme Heat Policy came into play.

Top women’s seeds Aryna Sabalenka and Caroline Garcia spent as little time as possible on Rod Laver Arena in their opening matches at the year’s first Grand Slam.

Fifth seed Sabalenka, who opened the year by winning the Adelaide International 1 title without losing a set, kept up her fine form with an emphatic 6-1 6-4 victory over Tereza Martincova.

“It wasn’t that simple a match and I am tremendous comfortable to begin with a win,” said the Belarusian.

“I have to work on my mindset, not getting upset with each mistake I’m making, I really consider that that is the one factor that’s lacking in my sport.”

Fourth seed Garcia, who gained the WTA Finals final season, was equally convincing with a 6-3 6-0 win over Canadian qualifier Katherine Sebov in simply over an hour.

Garcia will subsequent face one other Canadian in 2021 U.S. Open finalist Leylah Fernandez, who got here from an early break right down to beat Alize Cornet 7-5 6-2.

Italian Martina Trevisan was the primary seed to fall on Tuesday. The twenty first seed went down 6-3 6-2 to Slovakian qualifier Anna Karolina Schmiedlova.

Novak Djokovic will start his bid for a record-extending tenth title at Melbourne Park towards Spaniard Roberto Carballes Baena within the ultimate match of the day on Rod Laver Area.

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