Australian Open 2020: Serena powers through first round in Melbourne

Serena Williams needed less than an hour to get past Anastasia Potapova at the Australian Open first round match on Monday.

23-time grand slam champion Serena Williams celebrates at Melbourne Park after beating Anastasia Potapova.   -  Getty Images

Serena Williams produced a brilliant display to power past Anastasia Potapova in the Australian Open first round on Monday.

The American star started her campaign in Melbourne in style, needing just 58 minutes to cruise past Potapova 6-0 6-3.

Williams was in dominant form from the outset on Rod Laver Arena as her bid to join Margaret Court on a record 24 grand slam titles started with an impressive victory.

The 38-year-old is now 19-0 in Australian Open first-round matches, and will face either Tamara Zidansek or Han Na-lae next.

Williams was flawless in the first set, hitting 10 winners and winning the opener in just 19 minutes as Potapova had no answers.

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The Russian teenager improved in the second set and even broke for a 2-1 lead before Williams responded.

Williams grabbed a decisive break in the eighth game when Potapova sent a forehand into the net, her victory completed in less than an hour.

Serena has been stuck on 23 majors since claiming the 2017 Australian Open, following four losing finals at Wimbledon (2018 and 2019) and the US Open (2018 and 2019).

Asked about the looming record, Williams told reporters post-match: "I think it's factored a lot into my game, and now it's just more or less about doing the best that Serena Williams can do.

"Margaret Court was a wonderful, great champion. And now how great is Serena Williams? That's it. 

"That's kind of what I have been thinking about the last couple of weeks and months. It definitely helps me relax a lot."

 

STATISTICAL BREAKDOWN
Serena Williams [8] bt Anastasia Potapova 6-0 6-3

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Williams – 24/16
Potapova – 11/17

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Williams – 9/2
Potapova – 4/2

BREAK POINTS WON
Williams – 5/6
Potapova – 1/3

FIRST SERVE PERCENTAGE
Williams – 61
Potapova – 50

PERCENTAGE OF POINTS WON ON FIRST/SECOND SERVE
Williams – 81/45
Potapova – 62/24

TOTAL POINTS
Williams – 58
Potapova – 35

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