Wozniacki, title holder, easily qualified for the 3rd round


MELBOURNE: Denmark’s Caroline Wozniacki, the world’s No. 3 seeded at the Australian Open, easily qualified for the third round by defeating Swede Johanna Larsson (77), 6-1, 6-3, on Wednesday in Melbourne.

The former world No. 1 could now meet the Russian Maria Sharapova (30), opposed to the second round to the Swede Rebecca Peterson (62).

Caroline Wozniacki, who is aiming for a second Australian Open in a row to add a second Grand Slam title to her record, did not seem bothered by rheumatoid arthritis, which she revealed suffered in October and threatens her career. This inflammatory autoimmune disease attacks the joints and generates fatigue.

“I think I started pretty aggressively, but she started making fewer mistakes and I was just trying to stay consistent,” said the 28-year-old.

She made a great start and led 3-0 with only two points left.

The Swede came back but Wozniacki showed no sign of fatigue and continued to dictate the pace of the match.

She finished the first set in 27 minutes, not giving in to her opponent’s net.

The game of Wozniacki was a little less intense in the second set.

“She started making fewer mistakes, playing in the back of the court and getting into the net, it a little destabilised me,” she admitted.

“I just tried to stay as aggressive as I could until the end and I think I’ve been successful when needed.”