MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — In her first match at the Australian Open since a Williams sister was ensured to win the title, Venus Williams lost in the first round to Belinda Bencic and guaranteed it can’t occur in 2018.

Venus lost a year ago’s last at Melbourne Park to more youthful kin Serena, who secured an Open time record 23rd noteworthy yet hasn’t played a Grand Slam competition since due to her pregnancy and the introduction of her first youngster. The 6-3, 7-5 misfortune for Venus Williams was her first in five vocation meeting with Bencic, who lost to Serena Williams in the first round here a year ago.

  • The 20-year-old Bencic spared five break focuses in the eighth amusement before a rain delay caused a half-hour suspension of play as the rooftop was shut on Rod Laver Arena. She returned on a move, winning the following six focuses to hold serve and afterward secure the set.
  • Bencic collaborated with Roger Federer to win the Hopman Cup for Switzerland in the principal seven day stretch of the season, and had the 19-time real champ’s folks in the group supporting her on Monday. It more likely than not helped, having conquered the unexpected when the draw was made that she’d need to play another Williams in the first round.
  • “Truly, the primary response of everybody was ‘Gracious, misfortune.’ But obviously, it is pleasant to play some individual simpler first round and get your cadence a tad,” Bencic said. “It’s stunning, when I was a young lady, I was watching them on TV. I never thought I’d get an opportunity to play them.”
  • Williams’ exit taken after U.S. Open champion Sloane Stephens’ 2-6, 7-6 (2), 6-2 misfortune to Zhang Shuai. No. 13-seeded Stephens was serving for the match in the tenth round of the second set yet dropped her serve. She was outflanked in the sudden death round and in the third set.
  • It generally formed as an extreme opener for Stephens, who hasn’t won a visit level match since her Grand Slam achievement triumph at the U.S. Open a year ago and confronting a player positioned No. 34, two spots off being seeded for the principal major of the season.
  • Stephens didn’t play a year ago’s Australian Open in view of left foot damage that kept her out of activity until Wimbledon. Since beating Madison Keys in the U.S. Open last, Stephens has lost eight matches.

Venus Williams, US Champion Stephens Out in 1st Round

“Sloane she plays so well, won the U.S. Open — everybody knows — she’s an awesome player,” Zhang said. “I know how hard I’m functioning … coming to Australia I’m prepared for each match, each player. That is the reason I won today.” French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko made a positive begin with a 6-1, 6-4 prevail upon 37-year-old Francesca Schiavone, the 2010 French Open victor.

Ostapenko spared two break focuses in the third session of the opening set and secured the set with a pro. After a trade of administration softens up the second, Ostapenko got the definitive break in the ninth amusement, at that point served out the match after twofold blaming on her first match point.


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