Fans appear to boo Andy Murray at Australian Open
Follow all the action as the second round of the Australian Open gets underway on the third day of the tournament in Melbourne. Tournament favourite Ashleigh Barty took just 52 minutes to storm to another emphatic victory, this time a 6-1 6-1 victory over Italian qualifier Lucia Bronzetti, to reach the third round. The women’s number one seed required even less time than the 54 minutes she needed for her round one win against Lesia Tsurenko on Monday as the Australian cruised through. Rafael Nadal also stormed to a dominant 6-2 6-3 6-4 victory over German qualifier Yannick Hanfmann as he reached the third round without dropping a set.
Defending champion Naomi Osaka produced a magnificent display of ball-striking as she swept past American Madison Brengle 6-0 6-4, as she remains on course for a fourth round meeting with Barty. Osaka wrapped up the opening set in just 20 minutes before overcoming a break of serve to seal the second. In the final match of the day on Rod Laver, third seed Alexander Zverev took down home hopeful John Millman in an impressive 6-4 6-4 6-0 performance. Maria Sakkari also advanced in the final match on Margaret Court Arena, 6-1 6-4 against Qinwnen Zheng. Follow all the latest updates below:
What you might have missed on Wednesday
Ashleigh Barty, Naomi Osaka and Rafael Nadal all won comfortably at the Australian Open on Wednesday.
Osaka and Barty could meet each other in the fourth round and both have been untroubled so far, with Barty dropping only three games in two matches, while Nadal saw off a spirited challenge from German qualifier Yannick Hanfmann.
On a very good day for the big names, the leading casualties were 10th seed Hubert Hurkacz who was knocked out by Adrian Mannarino, and Olympic champion Belinda Bencic beaten by Amanda Anisimova.
Here’s what you might have missed:
Ben Burrows19 January 2022 14:19
Djokovic saga labelled ‘messy’ and ‘embarrassing’
An Australian television host has called the Novak Djokovic visa controversy “messy” and “embarassing”.
Allison Langdon, who co-hosts popular morning programme Today, believes that there is little need to “dwell on” the events that saw Djokovic deported from Australia and unable to defend his Australian Open crown.
The Serbian’s visa was revoked by the government having failed to fulfil federal coronavirus requirements and admitting that incorrect information had been included on his immigration forms.
Langdon expressed the opinion that people should now focus on events on-court and forget the Djokovic saga that marred the build-up to the first Grand Slam of the year.
“It was messy, embarrassing, but now we are focused on the court,” Langdon wrote in the Nine Network breakfast show’s newsletter.
“[It was] a little distraction in the lead up [to the Australian Open] which we don’t need to dwell on.”
Ben Burrows19 January 2022 13:55
Raducanu inspired by Murray’s fighting spirit at Australian Open
Emma Raducanu took inspiration from Andy Murray’s fighting spirit to break new ground at the Australian Open.
Raducanu told the PA news agency: “When I was in the third set I actually thought, ‘Andy was up a set then he got pushed to five but he fought back so hard and took the decider’, so, when I went to three, I was also thinking, ‘Actually, I can fight back and win, fight like he did’. I was definitely inspired by him.”
“I’ve watched so many of Andy’s matches, all his finals here in Australia, but his match against Agut [three years ago] was some of the best fighting I’ve ever seen,” she added. “It’s great to have a role model like him leading British tennis.”
Jamie Braidwood19 January 2022 13:45
Emma Raducanu ‘still has a lot to learn’, warns Sloane Stephens
Sloane Stephens appeared to question Emma Raducanu’s on-court behaviour and said the 19-year-old “still has a lot to learn” after the pair’s first-round match at the Australian Open.
Raducanu emerged victorious after a volatile match in which she blitzed the first set in just 17 minutes before being broken three times on her own serve in the second. However, as the momentum threatened to turn against her, Raducanu recovered brilliantly to dominate the deciding set.
Speaking to the media after the match, though, Stephens seemed to suggest that some of Raducanu’s behaviour had been a little theatrical.
“Everyone saw after the first point she gave like a massive scream,” Stephens said. “She played me, someone she’s ranking-wise supposed to beat. And, I mean, yeah, she won.”
Jamie Braidwood19 January 2022 13:12
Naomi Osaka brings the heat at Australian Open to remain on Ashleigh Barty collision course
If the top half of the Australian Open draw could be accused of lacking notable drama so far, Naomi Osaka ensured she at least provided some fireworks. The big names playing on day three in Melbourne all progressed without much difficulty on Wednesday, and while the start of the second round saw few shocks, it means a meeting between defending champion Osaka and tournament favourite Ashleigh Barty remains alive.
Jamie Braidwood19 January 2022 13:03
Australian Open 2022: Monfils through to third round
Gael Monfils has done it! What a result from the Frenchman and arguably the performance of the day, too. He dispatches Alexander Bublik thanks to a 6-1 6-0 6-4 victory, and the top half draw is opening up nicely too.
Jamie Braidwood19 January 2022 12:46
Andy Murray working on closing out matches quicker at Australian Open
Andy Murray relishes the sort of five-set epic that carried him into the second round of the Australian Open but he would happily take a boring three-setter on Thursday.
“Obviously, in some of the matches that I have played I wouldn’t expect, even if I was playing at my peak, necessarily to win in straight sets,” Murray said ahead of his match against Taro Daniel.
“A match like (Basilashvili) against someone who is in the 20s in the world, it’s always going to be difficult. But obviously it would be nice to have some quicker ones.
“That’s where I have had this discussion with my team and we were talking about trying to shorten matches and ways to play quicker points.”
Jamie Braidwood19 January 2022 12:30
Relaxed Nadal relishing not having ‘big pressure’
Rafael Nadal is confident he is on the right path after moving smoothly into the third round of the Australian Open.
German qualifier Yannick Hanfmann put up a good fight on Rod Laver Arena including saving four match points, but sixth seed Nadal took his fifth chance to clinch a 6-2 6-3 6-4 victory after two hours and 42 minutes.
“I think he played great tennis out there, playing very aggressive, big shots,” said Nadal. “It wasn’t an easy game at all.”
Nadal is unbeaten so far this season having cut short his 2021 campaign in August because of a foot problem. He is the only former champion in the men’s draw but is currently third favourite behind Daniil Medvedev and Alexander Zverev.
“I think I am doing things well,” said Nadal. “Things that I can improve I have to improve. I want to keep going in the tournament. But winning today allows me to practise again tomorrow, to be ready for another match. After two matches it’s the moment to make a step forward.”
Jamie Braidwood19 January 2022 12:15
Australian Open 2022: Monfils takes two-set lead
There’s only one match still ongoing in Melbourne, and Gael Monfils is making light work of it.
The popular Frenchman is 6-1 6-0 and cruising against Alexander Bublik.
Jamie Braidwood19 January 2022 11:57
Australian Open 2022: Zverev safely through
Alexander Zverev said he was expecting to be booed after defeating Aussie John Millman.
“I feel good, I won… I could really feel that you guys were in lockdown for two years! It was an amazing atmosphere and hopefully it will get even louder for the next few matches.
“I was prepared that everyone would hate me after the match. I was hoping to get the boos and for everyone to be against me.”
Jamie Braidwood19 January 2022 11:54