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Barty & Dellacqua Dominate In Opener

Last year's Australian Open runners-up, Ashleigh Barty and Casey Dellacqua, made short work of Alexandra Panova and Karolina Pliskova in first round doubles action.

Published January 16, 2014 12:11

Barty & Dellacqua Dominate In Opener
Casey Dellacqua, Alexandra Panova, Ashleigh Barty, Karolina Pliskova

MELBOURNE, Australia - Ashleigh Barty and Casey Dellacqua continued their superb play in Grand Slams with a first round rout on Thursday at the Australian Open.

Barty and Dellacqua came into Melbourne 15-4 in Grand Slam matches, highlighted by runner-up showings in 2013 at the Australian Open, Wimbledon and US Open.

The fifth-seeded Australians disposed of Alexandra Panova and Karolina Pliskova, 61 61, in 52 minutes for the most one-sided win of their partnership. The key stat was second serve points won, with Barty and Dellacqua converting on 12 of 19 and Panova and Pliskova only four of 21.

A team with an even greater Grand Slam résumé, No.1 seeds Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci, were tested in the first set of their opener but were 75 62 winners versus Mona Barthel and Megan Moulton-Levy. That improved the three-time major champions to 12-2 at the Australian Open, where they were runners-up in 2012 and titlists in 2013.

Second-seeded Hsieh Su-Wei and Peng Shuai needed seven minutes short of three hours to get past Eva Hrdinova and Paula Ormaechea, 67(6) 76(1) 60. Also moving on were sixth-seeded Cara Black and Sania Mirza and seventh-seeded Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Safarova.

There was one upset, with Alizé Cornet and Caroline Garcia 63 63 victors over No.10 seeds Marina Erakovic and Zheng Jie.

An unseeded duo that is sure to have a lot of eyeballs on them got off to a strong start, as Svetlana Kuznetsova and Samantha Stosur disposed of Irina Buryachok and Oksana Kalashnikova, 61 62. Kuznetsova has two singles and two doubles Grand Slam titles, while Stosur has one singles and two doubles Grand Slams.

The Williams sisters versus 12th-seeded Kristina Mladenovic and Flavia Pennetta is among the remaining first round matches scheduled for Friday. Errani and Vinci, Hsieh and Peng and fourth-seeded Kveta Peschke and Katarina Srebotnik will be in second round action.

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