For someone with precious little match conditioning heading into the Australian Open, Maria Sharapova didn’t look like someone concerned about any supposed imbalance on Wednesday.
Sharapova beat Japan’s Misaki Doi 6-0, 6-0 in just 47 minutes, her second consecutive match at Melbourne Park, where her opponent failed to win a game. Doi won only 15 points.
Sharapova had not played a competitive match this year until her first round double-bagel win over fellow Russian Olga Puchkova on Monday. She was the first woman to achieve that feat in consecutive matches at a Grand Slam since Wendy Turnbull at the Australian Open in 1985.
“I’ve been playing really aggressive and doing the right things,” Sharapova said. “It’s not easy to be up so much because you can have a few let downs. You just have to try to concentrate. My job is to make it as easy as possible.”
Sharapova might find the competition tougher in the next round, where she meets Venus Williams, who beat Alize Cornet 6-3, 6-3.
Samantha Stosur, who has spoken of her anxiety of playing in front of her home crowd, served twice for the match but double-faulted on match point to lose 6-4, 1-6, 7-5 to China’s Zheng Jie.
“At 5-2 up in the third, double break, probably is a bit of a choke, yeah,” Stosur admitted. “Obviously it’s a hard one to take when you get yourself into a winning position and you lose five games straight.”
Radwanksa on song
Earlier, fourth-seeded Agnieszka Radwanksa extended the best winning streak of the year to 11 matches. She eased into the third round with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Irina-Camelia Begu.
“I can play even better,” said Radwanska, who lost last year’s Wimbledon final to Serena Williams. “I didn’t really expect I could win that many matches in a row, and hopefully I can keep going.”
With Azarenka and Serena Williams on the other half of the draw, Radwanska’s main obstacles to reaching the final are 2011 French Open champion Li Na, who beat Olga Goortsova 6-2, 7-5 to reach the third round, and potential semifinal rivals Sharapova or No. 5 Angelique Kerber, who advanced with a 6-3, 6-1 win over Lucie Hradecka.
In other women’s second round matches - No. 11 Marion Bartoli beat Serbian qualifier Vesna Dolonc 7-5, 6-0; No. 13 Ana Ivanovic had a 7-5, 1-6, 6-4 win over Taiwanese qualifier Chan Yung-jan; No. 18 Julia Gorges beat Romina Oprandi 6-3, 6-2; No. 22 Jelena Jankovic beat qualifier Maria Joao Koehler 2-6, 7-6 (5), 6-2; and 17-year-old American wild card entry Madison Keys beat No. 30 Tamira Paszek of Austria 6-2, 6-1.
Russian qualifier Valeria Savinykh upset No. 15 Dominika Cibulkova 7-6 (6), 6-4 and Kirsten Flipkens of Belgium beat No. 23 Klara Zakopalova 6-1, 6-0.
Ferrer, Berdych move on
On the men’s side, David Ferrer needed five match points before clinching a 6-0, 7-5, 4-6, 6-3 win over American Tim Smyczek, who got into the main draw as a lucky loser from qualifying.
Tomas Berdych beat Guillaume Rufin of France 6-2, 6-2, 6-4, and No. 10 Nicolas Almagro and No. 16-ranked Kei Nishikori also moved on. No. 24 Jerzy Janowicz of Poland rallied from two sets down to overpower Somdev Devvarman 6-7 (10), 3-6, 6-1, 6-0, 7-5.
Also advancing were No. 28 Marcos Baghdatis, No. 31 Rad Stepanek and No. 32 Julien Benneteau.
No. 20 Sam Querrey advanced when fellow American Brian Baker retired in the second set with what appeared to be a right knee injury and next plays No. 15 Stanislas Wawrinka.