Sharapova stays cool on hot day

Wozniacki gallops into Melbourne quarter-finals

Former tennis player Andre Agassi, coach of Novak Djokovic of Serbia, speaks during an official event promoting the Australian Open tennis tournament at the Grand Slam Oval in Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia, January 19, 2018.

Angelique Kerber celebrated her 30th birthday Thursday by setting up a mouth-watering clash between the only two former Australian Open champions left in the draw.

The meeting between Simona Halep and Eugenie Bouchard might bring a little frost to a hot day as the top seed and world number one said previous year she did not talk to the Canadian, who beat her in the 2014 Wimbledon semi-finals.

Considered one of the contenders for the title after Serena Williams opted against defending her Australian title, Muguruza had a troubled preparation.

"It's definitely hot", she said afterwards.

"I'm happy I'm still part of [the tournament] really, because I knew Struff could be tough today." said the second seed.

He added: "I think there are certain days where you just have to, as a tournament supervisor, recognize that you might need to give players a few extra hours until it [the temperature] comes down".

Germany's Andrea Petkovic said that heat and fatigue had sapped her mental game, after she was knocked out by the US' Lauren Davis following a marathon first match and a doubles. "I knew I wanted to use the medical timeout because I needed it, but at the same time I knew it was nothing major that can potentially raise the question mark on whether I can continue playing or not". She's had success playing out here in these conditions on these courts.

Federer cruises, big names advance in Australia
It was the Latvian who ended her Grand Slam comeback in the last-16 of the US Open in 2017 as she returned from a drug ban. Open finalist past year , took just 41 minutes to beat Russian Ekaterina Alexandrova 6-0 6-1 in the second round.

"It's just the beginning of the year, but I'm feeling the tennis again", she said.

Sharapova certainly seems to be enjoying returning to Australia for the first time since her failed doping test two years ago.

The 14th seed, who is bidding to clinch his sixth Australian Open title, went down in the first set, but he rebounded strongly to eventually outplay Monfils 4-6, 6-3, 6-1, 6-3 in a thrilling second-round clash at the Melbourne Park.

"We're high-level athletes capable of pushing the limits very far and sometimes too far, that's why I say that it could be unsafe". I'm not looking too much about the age, just how I'm feeling. "I mean, we both struggled". "There's a lot of things to smile about".

Sam Querrey was the latest of the leading USA men eliminated when he lost his second-round match 6-4, 7-6 (6), 4-6, 6-2 to 80th-ranked Marton Fucsovics.

'I think that's good, whatever the topic is, to be honest.

But their potential fourth-round opponent, Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza, followed Jo Konta out of the top half of the women's draw.

Djokovic urged tennis organizers to be more flexible about the rules for drink breaks, time between points and suspension of play when the conditions were bordering on unsafe.

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