Gippsland Trophy Katie Boulter Wins As Australian Open Warm-ups Begin

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Gippsland Trophy Katie Boulter Wins As Australian Open Warm-ups Begin

Britain’s Katie Boulter beat Anna Kalinskaya in the first round of the Gippsland Trophy as players began their Australian Open preparations.

Boulter, playing in just her second WTA main draw match since February 2019, beat the Russian 6-1 6-3 in 59 minutes.

The 24-year-old will play world number 48 Coco Gauff next in Melbourne.

American Gauff, who reached the fourth round of the Australian Open in 2020, battled past Switzerland’s Jil Teichmann 6-3 6-7 (6-8) 7-6 (7-5).

Gauff squandered a 4-2 lead in the second set and a 4-1 advantage in the third before eventually winning in two hours and 47 minutes.

British number one Johanna Konta, who had a first-round bye, will play America’s Bernarda Pera.

US Open champion Naomi Osaka and world number two Simona Halep are also in the main draw at this event, which is one of six being played simultaneously at Melbourne Park this week.

Top seed Halep advanced to the third round with a 6-4 6-4 win over Russia’s Anastasia Potapova.

In the Yarra Valley Classic, Britain’s Francesca Jones lost 6-1 6-3 to French Open semi-finalist Nadia Podoroska of Argentina.

American 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams won her first match of the year with a 6-1 6-4 victory over Daria Gavrilova.

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The fifth seed will play Bulgaria’s Tsvetana Pironkova in the last 16.

Venus Williams breezed past Arantxa Rus 6-1 6-3 to set up a second-round meeting with two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova.

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World number one Ashleigh Barty will return to action on Tuesday against Ana Bogdan.

Australia’s Barty, who chose not to travel in 2020 because of the pandemic, is joined in the main draw by Karolina Pliskova and Sofia Kenin.

In the men’s Murray River Open, British number two Cameron Norrie was edged out 4-6 7-6 (7-2) 6-3 by American Tommy Paul.

Compatriot Dan Evans will play Pedro Sousa of Portugal in the same event on Tuesday.

The ATP Cup, a men’s team event featuring world number one Novak Djokovic and 20-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal, begins at Melbourne Park on Tuesday, while there is also a women’s singles event – the Grampians Trophy – starting on Wednesday which is for players who have been in ‘hard’ quarantine.

All players arriving in Australia had to undergo a 14-day quarantine before the tournaments began. Most were able to leave their accommodation for five hours a day to train but a group of 72 were confined to their hotel rooms for the duration because of positive coronavirus cases on their charter flights.

Gippsland Trophy Katie Boulter Wins As Australian Open Warm-ups Begin

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