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Williams Sisters Safely Into Second Round

Serena and Venus Williams were among the seeded winners as the first round of Australian Open doubles action wrapped up.

Published January 17, 2013 05:29

Williams Sisters Safely Into Second Round
Serena Williams, Venus Williams

MELBOURNE, Australia - The Williams sisters recorded a routine defeat of Camila Giorgi and Stefanie Voegele in their doubles opener on a sweltering Thursday at the Australian Open.

"I think the challenge is just to go out there and stay focused and do the best I can," Serena Williams said after her singles win earlier in the day referring to playing twice in one day. "But other than that, I feel I will be fine. I have done this more times than the average person, so I should be okay."

The 12th-seeded Williamses were more than okay, as they never faced a break point and lost only four first serve points in the 63 61 victory. In the process, they improved their Australian Open record to 34-3, their Grand Slam record to 105-9 and their record in Grand Slam openers to 25-1, with their only defeat coming in their very first major at the hands of Jill Hetherington and Kathy Rinaldi Stunkel at the 1997 US Open.

"I have such a great doubles partner," Venus Williams tweeted after Thursday's match. "Serena Williams was born to play that forehand side and me the backhand!"

The Williamses, who are seeking their 14th doubles Grand Slam, next take on Vera Dushevina and Olga Govortsova.

Other seeded winners were No.4 seeds Ekaterina Makarova and Elena Vesnina, No.5 seeds Nadia Petrova and Katarina Srebotnik, No.6 seeds Liezel Huber and María José Martínez Sánchez, No.7 seeds Nuria Llagostera Vives and Zheng Jie, No.8 seeds Raquel Kops-Jones and Abigail Spears, No.9 seeds Anna-Lena Groenefeld and No.13 seeds Irina-Camelia Begu and Monica Niculescu.

One seeded duo did go down, as Julia Goerges and Samantha Stosur pounded 34 winners in their 63 61 triumph over 16th-seeded Daniela Hantuchova and Anabel Medina Garrigues.

"A nice win with Sammy in doubles today. It was a lot of fun," Goerges tweeted. "Thanks to the great crowd who stayed even in these conditions!"

Among Friday's notable second round match-ups are No.2 seeds Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka against Kimiko Date-Krumm and Arantxa Parra Santonja. Hlavackova and Hradecka were runners-up here last year, and Date-Krumm has a historic run going in singles.

The mixed doubles event also gets underway Friday. Among the favorites to emerge from the draw are top-seeded Lisa Raymond and Mike Bryan, Vesnina and Leander Paes, Sania Mirza and Mike Bryan and Huber and Max Mirnyi.

Raymond and Mike Bryan have three mixed majors together. Vesnina and Paes reached two mixed major finals last year, including here. Mirza has two mixed majors and Bob Bryan has seven. And Huber has two mixed majors, while Mirnyi has three and an Olympic gold.

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