Serena Williams wins Australian Open return; Venus gets by
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — This was quite a return for Serena Williams. Almost as if she never left.
In her first match at the Australian Open since winning the 2017 title while pregnant — and her first official match anywhere since a loss in the chaotic U.S. Open final last September — Williams looked to be at her dominant best, overpowering Tatjana Maria 6-0, 6-2 in the first round Tuesday.
Lapko wins, Zvonareva out at Tashkent Open
TASHKENT, Uzbekistan (AP) — Vera Lapko reached the quarterfinals of the Tashkent Open on Wednesday by beating qualifier Ivana Jorovic 6-2, 6-4.
The 19-year-old Lapko, the highest-ranked player left in the draw at 64th in the world, will next face German player Mona Barthel.
Russian veteran Vera Zvonareva, once ranked second in the world, lost to Hungarian qualifier Fanny Stollar 7-6 (2), 6-4.
Bouchard loses in 1st round of Tashkent Open
TASHKENT, Uzbekistan (AP) — Eugenie Bouchard was eliminated in the first round of the Tashkent Open on Monday, continuing another difficult season for the former Wimbledon finalist.
Bouchard lost to 2015 Tashkent champion Nao Hibino 6-3, 6-3 despite being a break up early in the second set.
Hibino will next face Anna Karolina Schmiedlova, who beat Dejana Radanovic 6-3, 6-0.
MONTREAL (AP) — Serena Williams has pulled out of next week's Rogers Cup hard-court tournament, citing personal reasons.
The tournament announced Williams' withdrawal on Saturday.
The 23-time Grand Slam champion is coming off the most lopsided defeat of her career, a 6-1, 6-0 loss to Johanna Konta in San Jose, California, on Tuesday.
Sharapova back in Oz, joins Federer, Djokovic in 2nd round
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — It wasn't Maria Sharapova's choice to miss the last Australian Open. That decision was taken out of her hands because of a doping ban following a failed test on her previous visit to Melbourne Park.
The five-time major champion said it was her choice to return, though, and she relished every moment of it in Tuesday's 6-1, 6-4 victory over Tatjana Maria.
Agnieszka Radwanska advances to 2nd round at Tianjin Open
TIANJIN, China (AP) — Top-seeded Agnieszka Radwanska moved into the second round of the Tianjin Open by beating Tatjana Maria 6-1, 6-2 on Wednesday.
Radwanska, who won the China Open last week, broke Maria four times and saved the only break point she faced.
Second-seeded Svetlana Kuznetsova of Russia defeated Donna Vekic 7-5, 6-4 in the second round and will next play Japanese teenager Naomi Osaka, a 6-2, 7-6 (4) winner over Lucie Hrdecka.
Peng Shuai beats Venus Williams in 1st round of China Open
BEIJING (AP) — Peng Shuai produced the upset of the first round in the China Open on Monday, beating sixth-seeded Venus Williams 7-5, 6-1.
The 30-year-old Chinese wild-card entry broke Williams' serve twice in the second set.
In other matches, top-ranked Angelique Kerber defeated Katerina Siniakova 6-4, 6-4, No. 16 Elina Svitolina beat Tatjana Maria 6-2, 6-2, Daria Gavrilova beat Christina McHale 6-4, 6-4, and fifth-seeded Karolina Pliskova eliminated Lucie Safarova 6-7 (7), 6-1, 6-4.
Konjuh advances to 2nd round of Guangzhou Open
GUANGZHOU, China (AP) — U.S. Open quarterfinalist Ana Konjuh continued her impressive run of form with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Tatjana Maria in the opening round of the Guangzhou Open on Monday.
The 18-year-old Konjuh, who upset No. 4 seed Agnieszka Radwanska in New York before falling to eventual finalist Karolina Pliskova, defeated Maria in just under one hour despite double-faulting seven times and converting on less than half of her first serves.