Ranked Barty overcomes late collapse to advance to third round

Kiki Bertens of the Netherlands hits a return shot to Ashleigh Barty of Australia during their WTA Finals Tennis Tournament in Shenzhen China’s Guangdong province Tuesday Oct. 29 2019

Naomi Osaka of Japan defeated by Pliskova in a marathon semi-final at Brisbane moves up one place to third ahead of Simona Halep, who is also fine-tuning her Australian Open challenge in Adelaide. Training can not compare with actually playing.

"No more pressure - we're not there yet", she said. "I had the chance to train properly in the off-season", the Romanian former world number one said.

While she is expected to now relink with her regular doubles partner Coco Vanderweghe - with whom she won the 2018 US Open - she thanked Bertens for agreeing to partner her "in my lovely hometown of Brisbane" for the first tournament of the season.

"I actually felt there was a bit of a shift, especially a year ago", Tomljanovic told Sporting News.

"And to actually then just stand up and go "nup, I can do this" was probably the biggest step for me forward in 18 months that we had been working on stuff". "He's the best of the best and has been in that position for a long time, but I don't think necessarily that he changes whether it's 1, 2, 3 or 10 next to his name".

Yet Vondrousova will have her hands full with Rodionova, who before defeating Stephens upset Carla Suarez Navarro and Anastasia Potapova to reach the main draw.

Barty capitalised as the plucky Pavlyuchenkova also faltered on her serve, then closed out a rollercoaster match. "I pride myself on my fighting qualities".

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"It was a whirlwind year, but I'm back competing and doing what I love".

She was even more ruthless on Wednesday, thrashing the Australian qualifier, Arina Rodionova, conqueror of Sloane Stephens, 6-0, 6-0, taking less than an hour to see off the world 204.

"It was very hard, but I like the heat and I'm happy to be here for the first time", said Bencic, who soared up the rankings a year ago and won two titles, in Moscow and Dubai, on her way to a career-best 49 main-draw match wins. It's always great to get such unbelievable wins against the top players.

"Ash did some incredible things and I did feel like the interest, maybe I'm biased, but it did feel like it was higher with the females in Australia".

The reigning French Open champion dropped the first set, before overcoming some wobbles on her serve to down the world No.31 4-6 6-4 7-5 in a gripping contest.

Sandgren, unseeded this year, beat doubles specialist and local hope Michael Venus 6-4, 6-3, serving up 15 aces along the way.

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