MELBOURNE, Australia - No.6 seed Elina Svitolina continued her torrid start to the 2019 Australian Open with a dominant performance over Viktoria Kuzmova to book her spot into the third round.
After recording a clinical 6-1, 6-2 victory in just 61 minutes over Viktorija Golubic in her Melbourne debut, Svitolina backed it up with an equally fierce 6-4, 6-1 win over a determined Kuzmova to advance.
Svitolina’s serve was a big weapon throughout the 67-minute encounter, with the Ukrainian claiming 74% of points behind her first serve. She gave away nothing from the baseline, either, with 24 winners far outpacing her eight unforced errors across both sets.
Breaking through the solid Svitolina’s serve proved to be an insurmountable task for Kuzmova, with the Ukrainian dropping only two points in her opening four service games - leaving the pressure firmly on her younger opponent’s shoulders.
After fighting off three break points to hold for 3-3, Kuzmova saw her precious few chances slip away from her a few games later, finding herself unable to convert three break points at 5-4. Instead, it was Svitolina who roared ahead in the next game to finally claim the opening set.
Svitolina was in imperious form in the second set, reeling off five games in a row to break twice and put an end to the match after 67 minutes. The Ukrainian didn’t face a break point at all during the final set, which she sealed with an ace to book her spot in the third round.
Up next, Svitolina will take on the winner between Zhang Shuai and Kristyna Pliskova in the third round.