Serena Williams’ wait for No 24 continues as Wang Qiang sends her packing from Australian Open
Serena Williams’ pursuit of a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title is over for another couple of months after she was dumped out of the Australian Open by Wang Qiang.
Former world No 1 Williams was in imperious form in her first two matches at Melbourne Park and, having beaten Wang 6-1, 6-0 in 44 minutes during the US Open last September, many expected her to come out on top.
But the 27th seeded Wang clearly learned from her mistakes last year as she held off a late fightback from the American to win 6-4, 6-7 (2-7), 7-5 in two hours and 40 minutes.
The scintillating numbers behind Wang Qiang’s stunner:
— WTA Insider (@WTA_insider) January 24, 2020
After wasting a break point in game three, the Chinese player got the breakthrough five games later and then served out the first set.
She then appeared to be on course for at two-set win with a break in game five of the second set, but Williams dug deep and at one point came out on top of an incredible 24-point rally and eventually go the break back.
The 38-year-old pulled level after dominating the tie-breaker.
Wang again fashioned break points in games two and eight of the deciding set and then wasted two match points in game 12, but she wasn’t to be denied on the third one.
Chinese New Year celebration? 🇨🇳
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 24, 2020
“I think my team always believe I can do it,” Wang, who will face Ons Jabeur in the fourth round, said after the match.
“After last (I played Serena), I did really hard work on the court and off the court, it’s really good work and I believed I could do it.
“During the second set I was a little bit confused but in my mind I knew I had to focus on the court, focus on every point.”
Novak Djokovic hits back at allegations of being ‘selfish, difficult and ungrateful’
Djokovic says he finds it tough to be ‘a mere onlooker’.
Australian Open boss defends ‘better deal’ for the likes of Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams
Big-name players self-isolating in Adelaide.
Rotterdam Open boss reveals delight as ‘one of his all-time favourite players’ Rafael Nadal joins field
Rafael Nadal will return to Rotterdam.
Roberto Bautista Agut says quotes comparing quarantine to ‘jail, but with WiFi’ was ‘taken out of context’
Roberto Bautista Agut issues an apology.
More coronavirus cases linked to arrivals for Australian Open
Australian Open boss said the safety of the Victorian community will not be compromised.
Big boost for LTA’s innovation drive as it signs deal with UK distributor of the Slinger Bag
LTA signs deal with Framework Sports & Marketing Ltd.
Australian Open chief defends Novak Djokovic over quarantine note, saying ‘they were suggestions’
Craig Tiley jumps to Novak Djokovic’s defence.
Quarantine remains in place for 72 players ahead of Australian Open
Two Covid-19 cases have been deemed viral shedding.
EXCLUSIVE – British Davis Cup captain Leon Smith recalls sitting next to Judy Murray as her son won Wimbledon
We talk to Leon Smith about his coaching journey.
Australian Open tension boiling over as players, pundits, ex-pros, fans involved in social media spats
It’s all kicking off on social media.