Melbourne: World No. 1 and reigning champion Angelique Kerber wasted no time in racing into the fourth round of the Australian Open with a 6-0, 6-4 victory over Kristyna Pliskova on Rod Laver Arena on Friday.
The 29-year-old German served poorly in the first set and had a minor wobble in the second, but recovered her composure to progress comfortably to a meeting with American Coco Vandeweghe.
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Pliskova, the left-handed twin of US Open finalist Karolina, finally got on the scoreboard when she held serve in the ninth game of the contest and immediately broke when Kerber badly miscued a backhand at the net.
With men's champion Novak Djokovic having been knocked out in the second round on the same court a few hours earlier, Kerber will be delighted that she recovered to win in two sets after being taken to three in her first two matches.
Meanwhile, Coco Vandeweghe rallied from a break down in the deciding set to sweep past Eugenie Bouchard 6-4, 3-6, 7-5, setting up a fourth round clash with Kerber.
The 26-year-old American, who had never advanced beyond the third round at Melbourne Park before, dominated on serve and needed just the one break opportunity to clinch the first set.
Bouchard, who reached the semifinals at Melbourne Park three years ago, but has seen her ranking tumble after injury and poor form, fought back with a break in the second game of the second set to ensure the match went into a decider.
The Canadian seized an early advantage in the third, but the American broke back in the eighth game, staved off four break points in the next and then clinched victory in two hours, 21 minutes with a backhand winner.