Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Aussie Open Day 11: Serena finally subdues Keys

Serena Williams practices during the Bank of the West
Classic at Stanford last July. Williams won the title for
the third time. Photo by Paul Bauman
   Women's semifinals -- Serena Williams won the match, but Madison Keys won legions of admirers with her power and persistence.
   The top-seeded Williams needed nine match points to conquer the 19-year-old sensation 7-6 (5), 6-2 today in an all-American semifinal at Melbourne Park. Keys saved seven match points serving at 1-5 in the second set in an 11-minute game and one at 2-5. Williams finally ended the match with her 13th ace. 
   Neither player appeared hindered by her health problem. Williams is recovering from a respiratory infection, and Keys again played with her left thigh taped after hurting it in her quarterfinal victory over Venus Williams.
   Maria Sharapova, seeded fourth, improved to 6-0 against fellow Russian Ekaterina Makarova, seeded 10th, with a 6-3, 6-2 victory. In the second round, Sharapova saved two match points against Russian qualifier Alexandra Panova. 
   Men's semifinals -- Andy Murray, who's 0-3 in Australian Open finals, earned another shot at the title with a 6-7 (6), 6-0, 6-3, 7-5 victory over seventh-seeded Tomas Berdych.
   The sixth-seeded Murray, a two-time Grand Slam singles champion, will face the winner of Friday's match between top-seeded Novak Djokovic and fourth-seeded Stan Wawrinka, the defending champ. ESPN will televise the showdown live at 12:30 a.m. (California time).
   Djokovic leads the series 16-3 and will meet Wawrinka in the Australian Open for the third straight year, each time one round later. The first two encounters were marathons. Djokovic prevailed 12-10 in the fifth set in 5 hours, 2 minutes in the fourth round in 2013, and Wawrinka triumphed 9-7 in the fifth in 4 hours in last year's quarterfinals to snap a 14-match losing streak to the Serb.
   Notable -- Two unseeded teams will meet for the men's doubles title. Italians Simone Bolelli and Fabio Fognini will play Frenchmen Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut on Saturday at 2:30 a.m. (California time) on Tennis Channel.
   Mahut, 33, is best known for playing in the longest match ever. After 11 hours, 5 minutes over three days, John Isner prevailed 70-68 in the fifth set in the first round at Wimbledon in 2010.
   Stars and stripes -- In the women's doubles final, unseeded Bethanie Mattek-Sands of Phoenix and Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic will face 14th-seeded Yung-Jan Chan of Taiwan and Jie Zheng of China. Tennis Channel will televise the match on Thursday not before 9 p.m. California time.
   Mattek-Sands, the 2012 Australian Open mixed doubles champion with Horia Tecau of Romania, underwent hip surgery last April and missed six months.
   All remaining U.S. juniors were eliminated. Third-seeded Taylor Fritz and 11th-seeded Raveena Kingsley lost in the boys and girls singles quarterfinals, respectively, and the third-seeded team of Miomir Kecmanovic of Serbia and Michael Mmoh of Temple Hills, Md., fell in the boys doubles semifinals.
   Northern California connection -- Serena Williams won her third Bank of the West Classic title at Stanford last year. Sharapova was the runner-up to Victoria Azarenka in the 2010 Bank of the West Classic.
   Murray, a two-time Grand Slam singles champion, won the first of his 31 career titles in San Jose at 18 in 2006 and repeated the following year. He never returned, and the tournament folded after 2013.
   Fast facts -- Serena Williams, 33, can tie Helen Wills Moody for third place on the all-time list with 19 Grand Slam singles titles. Margaret Court has 24 and Steffi Graf 22. Williams is 5-0 in Australian Open finals and 16-2 against Sharapova with a 15-match winning streak.
   Sharapova and Makarova met in the Australian Open for the third time in four years, and the scores have been almost identical. Sharapova won 6-2, 6-3 in 2012 and 6-2, 6-2 in 2013.  
   Quote -- Serena Williams: "It's an honor for me to play someone who will be No. 1 in the future."

Cal women rise to No. 5 in college rankings

TOP 10 AND NORTHERN CALIFORNIA
(Previous ranking in parentheses)
Men's team
1. USC (1)
2. Oklahoma (2)
3. Virginia (3)
4. UCLA (4)
5. Ohio State (5)
6. North Carolina (7)
7. Georgia (8)
8. Illinois (11)
9. Texas (9)
10. Baylor (6)
12. Cal (15)
36. Stanford (31)
52. Santa Clara  (57)

Women's team
1. UCLA (1)
2. Florida (2)
3. North Carolina (3)
4. Duke (4)
5. Cal (6)
6. Baylor (9)
7. Alabama (7)
8. Stanford (8)
9. Georgia (10)
10. Virginia (5)
44. Saint Mary's (45)

Aussie Open Day 10 highlights: Keys edges Venus

Madison Keys, then 18, practices during the 2013
Bank of the West Classic at Stanford. In her only
appearance in the tournament, she upset No. 8 seed
Magdalena Rybarikova in the first round before losing
to qualifier Vera Dushevina. Photo by Paul Bauman
   Upset of the day -- Madison Keys' storybook tournament continued while Venus Williams' ended. In a battle of American generations, the unseeded Keys overcame a thigh injury to outlast the 18th-seeded Williams 6-3, 4-6, 6-4 today at Melbourne Park and reach her first Grand Slam semifinal.
   Keys, 19, had her left thigh taped at 1-4 (two service breaks) in the second set against Williams, 34. The same injury caused Keys to retire from a third-round match against Yaroslava Shvedova of Kazakhstan at Wimbledon last year.
   Williams was diagnosed with Sjogren's Syndrome, a chronic autoimmune disease, in 2011. She was trying to reach her first Grand Slam semifinal since the 2010 U.S. Open and become the oldest female semifinalist in a major since Billie Jean King (39) at Wimbledon in 1983.
   Keys has only one day rather than the customary two to recover for the semifinals.
   Match of the day -- A one-sided match suddenly became a thriller as defending champion Stan Wawrinka subdued 2014 U.S. Open runner-up Kei Nishikori 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (6) in the quarterfinals.   
   The fourth-seeded Wawrinka bolted to leads of 5-0 and 6-1 in the tiebreaker but blew all five match points. At 6-6, the fifth-seeded Nishikori attempted a risky drop shot that hit the tape and fell back. Wawrinka finally ended the match with an ace down the middle to avenge a five-set loss to Nishikori in the quarterfinals of last year's U.S. Open.
   Notable -- Serena Williams reached the Australian Open semifinals for the first time since winning the last of her five titles at Melbourne Park in 2010. The top seed, playing with a chest cold, routed 11th seed and 2014 runner-up Dominika Cibulkova 6-2, 6-2.  
   Top seed Novak Djokovic tamed hard-serving Milos Raonic, seeded eighth, 7-6 (5), 6-4, 6-2 in the quarterfinals. Djokovic, 27, seeks his fifth Australian Open title.
   In junior girls singles, No. 14 seed Katie Swan of Great Britain surprised No. 1 Shilin Xu of China 6-2, 6-2 in the third round.
   Men's semifinal matchups (seedings in parentheses) -- No. 6 Andy Murray vs. No. 7 Tomas Berdych. Berdych leads the head-to-head series 6-4.
   No. 1 Novak Djokovic vs. No. 4 Wawrinka. Djokovic leads the series 16-3. The veterans will meet in the Australian Open for the third straight year, each time one round later. The first two encounters were marathons. Djokovic prevailed 12-10 in the fifth set in 5 hours, 2 minutes in the fourth round in 2013, and Wawrinka triumphed 9-7 in the fifth in 4 hours in last year's quarterfinals to snap a 14-match losing streak to the Serb.
   Women's semifinal matchups -- No. 2 Maria Sharapova vs. No. 10 Ekaterina Makarova. Sharapova leads the series 5-0.
   No. 1 Serena Williams vs. Keys (first meeting).
   Stars and stripes -- The United States has two women in the semifinals of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time since the Williams sisters at Wimbledon in 2009. Three American women reached the quarterfinals of a Slam for the first time since the 2004 U.S. Open (Jennifer Capriati, Lindsay Davenport and Serena Williams). Davenport now coaches Keys.
   Third-seeded Taylor Fritz of Rancho Santa Fe in the San Diego area and 11th-seeded Raveena Kingsley of Fulton, Md., advanced to the junior boys and girls quarterfinals, respectively.
   Third-seeded Michael Mmoh of Temple Hills, Md., and Miomir Kecmanovic of Serbia moved into the boys doubles semifinals. 
   Northern California connection -- Serena Williams and Cibulkova have combined to win the last four titles in the Bank of the West Classic at Stanford. Williams triumphed in 2011, 2012 and 2014, and Cibulkova in 2013 (when Williams did not play in the tournament). Cibulkova lost to 15-year-old CiCi Bellis of Atherton, near Stanford, in the first round of last year's U.S. Open.
   Sameer Kumar, a Carmel, Ind., resident who will enroll at Stanford next year, lost to sixth-seeded Duck Hee Lee of South Korea 2-6, 6-0, 7-5 in the third round of junior boys singles. 
   Fast facts -- Wawrinka improved to 9-0 while Venus Williams fell to 9-1 this year. Both won Australian Open tuneup tournaments, Wawrinka in Chennai and Williams in Auckland.
   Quote -- Wawrinka: "Phew."

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Aussie Open Day 9 highlights: Berdych upsets Nadal

Tomas Berdych practices during the BNP Paribas Open
at Indian Wells last year. Photo by Paul Bauman
   Upset and match of the day -- Before the Australian Open began, Rafael Nadal said he wasn't in good enough shape to win the title. He was right.
   Seventh-seeded Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic dismantled the third-seeded Nadal 6-2, 6-0, 7-6 (5) on Monday (PST in the United States) to reach the semifinals at Melbourne Park.
   Coming into the Australian Open, Nadal had played only eight matches since last June because of a right wrist injury and appendix surgery in November. The 28-year-old Spaniard has won 14 Grand Slam singles titles, tied for second all-time with Pete Sampras behind Roger Federer's 17.
   Nadal had reached the final in his last two appearances in the Australian Open, losing to Novak Djokovic in a 5-hour, 53-minute epic in 2012 and to Stan Wawrinka last year. Nadal missed the 2013 tournament with a knee injury. He won his only Australian Open title in 2009, beating Federer in five sets.
   Berdych ended a 17-match losing streak to Nadal dating to 2007 and improved to 4-18 in the head-to-head series. In Berdych's only Grand Slam final, he lost to Nadal at Wimbledon in 2010.
   Notable -- No. 10 seed Ekaterina Makarova of Russia advanced to her second straight Grand Slam semifinal, rolling to a 6-4, 6-0 victory over third-seeded Simona "I Need" Halep of Romania.
   Makarova will meet countrywoman Maria Sharapova, the second seed who dominated seventh-seeded Eugenie Bouchard of Canada 6-3, 6-2.
   In the featured night match, sixth-seeded Andy Murray ended the run of 19-year-old Australian Nick Kyrgios, 6-3, 7-6 (5), 6-3.  
   Men's semifinal matchups (seedings in parentheses) -- No. 6 Murray vs. No. 7 Berdych, No. 1 Djokovic or No. 8 Milos Raonic vs. No. 4 Wawrinka or No. 5 "Special K" Kei Nishikori.
   Women's semifinal matchups -- No. 2 Sharapova vs. No. 10 Makarova, No. 1 Serena Williams or No. 11 Dominika Cibulkova vs. No. 18 Venus "And Mars" Williams or Madison "Avenue" Keys.
   Stars and stripes -- Unseeded Bethanie Mattek-Sands of Phoenix and Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic upset Makarova and countrywoman Elena Vesnina, the third seeds and last year's runners-up, 7-6 (5), 4-6, 6-2 to reach the women's doubles semifinals.
   The last remaining American in mixed doubles, 41-year-old Lisa Raymond, lost in the second round with Robert Lindstedt of Sweden.  
   Northern California connection -- Murray, a two-time Grand Slam singles champion, won the first of his 31 career titles in San Jose at 18 in 2006 and repeated the following year. He never returned, and the tournament folded after 2013. 
   Fifth-seeded Raquel Kops-Jones, a San Jose resident and former Cal star, and Abigail Spears lost to 13th-seeded Michaella Krajicek of the Netherlands and Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (3) in the women's doubles quarterfinals.
   Kops-Jones, 32, and Spears, 33, advanced to the semifinals last year for their best Grand Slam result. Krajicek, 26, is the sister of 1996 Wimbledon champion Richard Krajicek.
   Sameer Kumar, a Carmel, Ind., resident who's headed to Stanford next year, ousted ninth-seeded Mikael Ymer of Sweden 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 in the second round of junior boys singles.
   Lindstedt, 37, played at Fresno State before transferring to Pepperdine.
   Fast facts -- Nadal was shut out in a set in a Grand Slam match for the first time since losing to Federer 6-0, 7-6 (5), 6-7 (2), 6-3 in the 2006 Wimbledon final. Federer was 24 and Nadal 20 at the time.
   This is only the second time since the 2004 French Open that neither Federer, who lost to unseeded Andreas Seppi of Italy in the third round, nor Nadal has reached the semifinals of a Slam. Federer lost to Berdych in the quarterfinals of the 2012 U.S. Open, and Nadal missed the tournament with his knee injury.
   Quote -- Nadal: "As I said when I got here, it is always tough to come back from injuries. I am feeling OK, but it was not my day. Quarterfinals here is not bad for me."

Monday, January 26, 2015

Australian Open Day 8: Venus downs Radwanska

Venus Williams, serving in last year's
Bank of the West Classic at Stanford,
reached her first Grand Slam quarter-
final since the 2010 U.S. Open.
Photo by Paul Bauman
   Upset of the day -- No. 18 seed Venus Williams knocked off No. 6 Agnieszka Radwanska 6-3, 2-6, 6-1 today in Melbourne to reach her first Grand Slam quarterfinal since a semifinal appearance in the 2010 U.S. Open. Williams, 34, has won seven major singles titles (five at Wimbledon and two in the U.S. Open) but was diagnosed with Sjogren's Syndrome, an autoimmune disease, in 2011.
   Match of the day -- No. 4 seed and defending champion Stan Wawrinka topped Guillermo Garcia-Lopez of Spain 7-6 (2), 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (8) to advance to the final eight. Wawrinka, playing with a sore right elbow, trailed 5-0 and 6-2 in the fourth-set tiebreaker.
   Notable -- Top-seeded Serena Williams avenged her worst loss in a Grand Slam tournament by beating No. 24 Garbine Muguruza of Spain 2-6, 6-3, 6-2. During the first set, Williams struggled to breathe at times and had a coughing fit into a towel on a changeover, the Associated Press reported. Muguruza drubbed Williams 6-2, 6-2 in the second round of the French Open last year.
   No. 11 seed Dominika Cibulkova, last year's runner-up to since-retired Li Na, eliminated two-time Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka 6-2, 3-6, 6-3. Azarenka was unseeded in the tournament for the first time since 2007 after missing much of last year with foot and knee injuries.
   Top-seeded Novak Djokovic beat Gilles Muller, a 31-year-old left-hander from Luxembourg, 6-4, 7-5, 7-5 in a late-night match.
   Italians Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci, the top seeds and two-time defending champions in women's doubles, lost to 16th-seeded Julia Goerges and Anna-Lena Groenefeld of Germany 3-6, 6-4, 7-5 in the third round.
   Men's quarterfinal matchups (seedings in parentheses) -- No. 1 Novak Djokovic vs. Milos Raonic (8), No. 4 Wawrinka vs. No. 5 Kei Nishikori, No. 3 Rafael Nadal vs. No. 7 Tomas Berdych, No. 6 Andy Murray vs. Nick Kyrgios.
   Women's quarterfinal matchups --No. 1 Serena Williams vs. Cibulkova, No. 18 Venus Williams vs. Madison Keys, No. 3 Simona Halep vs. No. 10 Ekaterina Makarova, No. 2 Maria Sharapova vs. No. 7 Eugenie Bouchard.
   Stars and stripes -- In an all-American encounter, Keys overpowered Madison Brengle 6-2, 6-4. The United States has three women (the Williams sisters and Keys) in the quarterfinals, all in the top half of the draw. All U.S. men have been eliminated from singles and doubles.
   Three American women have reached the doubles quarterfinals: the fifth-seeded team of Raquel Kops-Jones from San Jose and Abigail Spears, and Bethanie Mattek-Sands, who's playing with Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic.
   Only three Americans entered mixed doubles, and only one, 41-year-old Lisa Raymond, remains after the first round. The 11-time Grand Slam doubles champion (six titles in women's doubles and five in mixed doubles) is playing with Sweden's Robert Lindstedt, who won the Australian Open men's doubles crown last year with Lukasz Kubot of Poland. 
   Northern California connection -- Top-seeded Bob and Mike Bryan lost in the third round of men's doubles for the second straight year. The 1998 NCAA champions from Stanford fell to 14th-seeded Dominic Inglot of Great Britain and Florin Mergea of Romania 7-6 (4), 6-3. Six of the Bryans' record 16 Grand Slam men's doubles titles have come in the Australian Open, more than anywhere else. 
   Both Serena Williams (singles) and Muguruza (doubles with countrywoman Carla Suarez Navarro) won titles in last year's Bank of the West Classic at Stanford.
   Brengle was the runner-up to Mayo Hibi, then 17, in the 2013 Sacramento Challenger. An ailing Brengle said at the time that she had been "throwing up all day." 
   Fast facts -- Venus Williams improved to 9-0 this year. She warmed up for the Australian Open by winning Auckland.
   Both Venus and Radwanska have younger sisters in professional tennis. Venus' sibling is fairly well known; Urszula Radwanska is ranked No. 149. 
   Quote -- Serena Williams: "(Muguruza) hits the ball really, really big. Someone in the crowd was like, 'C'mon, Serena, use spin,' and I was like, 'OK.' (There are) coaches everywhere out here. Thank you."

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Australian Open Day 7: Kyrgios tops Seppi in thriller

Nick Kyrgios, shown in the 2013 Sacramento Challenger, saved
a match point in his five-set victory over Andreas Seppi.
Photo by Paul Bauman
   Match of the day -- For the second straight night, a 19-year-old starred in Melbourne.
   Nick Kyrgios of Australia saved a match point and outlasted Italian veteran Andreas Seppi 5-7, 4-6, 6-3, 7-6 (5), 8-6 in 3 hours, 34 minutes today in the fourth round.
   Kyrgios became the first Aussie man to advance to the quarterfinals of the Australian Open since Lleyton Hewitt in 2005 and the first male teenager since Roger Federer to have reached two Grand Slam quarters.
   Madison Keys of Boca Raton, Fla., ousted two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova, seeded fourth, on Saturday to move into the fourth round of a major for the first time.
   Kyrgios survived a match point with a service winner at 5-6 in the fourth set of the night match in front of a boisterous capacity crowd of 10,500 at Hisense Arena.
   At Wimbledon last year, Kyrgios saved nine match points in a second-round victory over Richard Gasquet and stunned top-ranked Rafael Nadal in the fourth round before losing to Milos Raonic in the quarterfinals.
   Here's a link to my 2013 story on Kyrgios: http://norcaltennisczar.blogspot.com/2013/10/potential-star-kyrgios-upsets-klahn.html
   Seppi, trying to reach his first Grand Slam quarterfinal at age 30, showed no signs of a letdown after shocking second-seeded Roger Federer in the previous round.
   Upset of the day -- None. 
   Notable -- No. 6 seed Andy Murray held off No. 10 Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-3, 7-5 in 3 hours, 32 minutes to move into the Australian Open quarterfinals for the sixth straight year. Murray avenged a quarterfinal loss to Dimitrov at Wimbledon last year that ended the defense of Murray's title, the first in singles at Wimbledon for a British man in 77 years. Murray will face Kyrgios in the Melbourne quarters.
   Seventh-seeded Eugenie Bouchard, a 20-year-old Canadian, advanced to the quarters with a 6-1, 5-7, 6-2 win over Irina-Camelia "Ain't Too Proud To" Begu of Romania. Bouchard won nine of the first 10 games but lost seven of the next nine, forcing her to play a third set for the first time in the tournament.
   In the quarterfinals in the bottom half of the draw, Bouchard will take on No. 2 seed Maria Sharapova, and No. 3 Simona ("I Need") Halep will meet No. 10 Ekaterina Makarova.
   Men's seeded winners -- No. 3 Nadal, No. 6 Murray, No. 7 Tomas Berdych.
   Men's seeded losers -- No. 10 Dimitrov, No. 14 Kevin Anderson.
   Women's seeded winners -- No. 2 Sharapova, No. 3 Halep, No. 7 Bouchard, No. 10 Makarova.
   Women's seeded losers -- No. 21 Peng Shuai.
   Stars and stripes -- Lisa Raymond, 41, of Media, Pa., and Robert Lindstedt, 37, of Sweden outclassed Anastasia Rodionova of Russia and Robert Farah of Colombia 6-3, 6-2 in the first round of mixed doubles. Raymond has won 11 Grand Slam titles (six in women's doubles and five in mixed doubles) and Lindstedt one (in men's doubles at last year's Australian Open with Lukasz Kubot of Poland).
   In the first round of junior boys singles, third-seeded Taylor Fritz of Rancho Santa Fe in the San Diego area beat Alex Molcan of Slovakia 6-1, 6-4. 
   Northern California connection -- Fifth-seeded Raquel Kops-Jones, from San Jose and Cal, and Abigail Spears advanced to the women's doubles quarterfinals with a 6-4, 6-4 win over 12th-seeded Alla Kudryavtseva and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia. Kops-Jones and Spears reached the semifinals last year for their best Grand Slam result.
   Kops-Jones and Scott Lipsky, a former Stanford star, lost to fourth-seeded Andrea Hlavackova of the Czech Republic and Alexander Peya of Austria 6-1, 6-3 in the opening round of mixed doubles.
   Lindstedt competed at Fresno State before transferring to Pepperdine. Rodionova played for the now-defunct Sacramento Capitals in World TeamTennis.
   In the first round of junior boys singles, Sameer Kumar of Carmel, Ind., defeated Renta Tokuda of Japan 6-4, 1-6, 6-3. Kumar is headed to Stanford next year. 
   Fast facts -- Murray seeks his first Australian Open title after three runner-up finishes (2010, 2011 and 2013). In addition to Wimbledon in 2013, he won the 2012 U.S. Open for his maiden Grand Slam title in his fifth final. Murray spent last year rebounding from "minor" back surgery in September 2013, reaching the quarterfinals or better in all four Slams but failing to play in a major final for the first time since 2009.
   Berdych reached the Australian Open quarterfinals, in which he will play Nadal, for the fifth consecutive year. He lost in the quarters from 2011 through 2013 and in last year's semifinals to eventual champion Stan Wawrinka 6-3, 6-7 (1), 7-6 (3), 7-6 (4).
   Quote -- Bouchard, who took a short break after double-faulting to lose the second set: "I gave myself a good, long hard look in the mirror. I said, 'Genie, this is unacceptable.' I really kind of kicked my self in the butt a little bit."

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Australian Open Day 6: A star is born (maybe)

Madison Keys, then 18, practices during the 2013
Bank of the West Classic at Stanford. In her only
appearance in the tournament, she upset No. 8 seed
Magdalena Rybarikova in the first round before losing
to qualifier Vera Dushevina. Photo by Paul Bauman
   Upset of the day -- Maybe there's hope for U.S. women's tennis when the Williams sisters retire, after all.
   Madison Keys, 19, outslugged fourth seed and two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova 6-4, 7-5 today in Melbourne to reach the fourth round of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time. 
   In addition to her tremendous power, the 5-foot-10 (1.78-meter) Keys displayed remarkable composure as she held serve at love to close out the biggest victory of her career. She's ranked 35th.
   Keys began working with International Tennis Hall of Famer Lindsay Davenport late last year. 
   Match of the day -- No. 18 seed Venus Williams defeated Camila Giorgi of Italy 4-6, 7-6 (3), 6-1 in the third round in Melbourne. Giorgi, ranked 33rd, served for the match in the second set but was broken at love.
   Giorgi, 23, was trying to become the second Italian in two nights to pull off a big upset. Andreas Seppi stunned Roger Federer in the third round.
   The 34-year-old Williams, a seven-time Grand Slam singles champion, reached the round of 16 in a major for the first time since being diagnosed with Sjogren's Syndrome, which can cause joint pain and saps energy, in 2011.  
   Notable -- Gilles Muller, a 31-year-old left-hander from Luxembourg, toppled 19th-seeded John Isner of Tampa, Fla., 7-6 (4), 7-6 (6), 6-4 in the third round. Muller is best known for reaching the quarterfinals of the 2008 U.S. Open as a qualifier.
   Victoria Azarenka, unseeded in the Australian Open for the first time since 2007, outplayed 25th-seeded Barbora Zahlavova Strycova of the Czech Republic 6-4, 6-4. Azarenka won the Australian Open in 2012 and 2013 but missed most of last year with foot and knee injuries.
   Both defending men's doubles champions, Lukasz Kubot and Robert Lindstedt, were eliminated in the second round. They played with separate partners this year. Nothing like breaking up a winning combination ... 
   Men's seeded winners -- No. 1 Novak Djokovic, No. 4 Stan Wawrinka, No. 5 Kei Nishikori, No. 8 Milos Raonic, No. 9 David Ferrer, No. 12 Feliciano Lopez.
   Men's seeded losers -- No. 18 Gilles Simon, No. 19 John Isner, No. 31 Fernando Verdasco.
   Women's seeded winners -- No. 1 Serena Williams, No. 6 Agnieszka Radwanska, No. 11 Dominika Cibulkova, No. 18 Venus Williams, No. 24 Garbine Muguruza.
   Women's seeded losers -- No. 19 Alize Cornet, No. 25 Barbora Zahlavova Strycova, No. 26 Elina Svitolina, No. 30 Varvara Lepchenko.
   Stars and stripes -- Four U.S. women, all in the top half of the draw, reached the round of 16: the Williams sisters, Keys and Madison Brengle. The two Madisons will meet for the second time. Keys won 6-3, 6-2 in the first round of qualifying for the 2012 U.S. Open. 
   The only other remaining American man in the Australian Open, Steve Johnson, lost to fifth-seeded Kei Nishikori 6-7 (7), 6-1, 6-2, 6-3. Nishikori is coming off his first Grand Slam final, a 6-3, 6-3, 6-3 loss to Marin Cilic.
   Northern California connection -- Davenport, a lifelong Los Angeles-area resident, practically made Northern California her second home as a player.
   Davenport racked up a whopping nine titles (three in singles and six in doubles) in the Bank of the West Classic at Stanford. All of her doubles crowns came with a different partner (Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, Mary Joe Fernandez, Martina Hingis, Natalia Zvereva, Corina Morariu and Liezel Huber), and four came consecutively (1996-99).
   Davenport also played for the now-defunct Sacramento Capitals in World TeamTennis in separate stints as an unknown 17-year-old, a budding star on the WTA tour and a 31-year-old mother. She was named the WTT Female Rookie of the Year at 17 in 1993 and helped the Capitals win three of their record six league titles (1997, 1998 and 2007).
   Top-ranked Bob and Mike Bryan, 36-year-old former Stanford stars, defeated Carlos Berlocq and Leonardo Mayer of Argentina 5-7, 6-3, 6-1 in the second round. The Bryans seek their seventh Australian Open men's doubles title.
   Lindstedt played at Fresno State before transferring to Pepperdine.
   Fast fact -- Giorgi committed 16 double faults in her loss to Venus Williams.
   Quote -- ESPN2 commentator and International Tennis Hall of Famer Pam Shriver on Keys: "She has a chance to win the Australian Open based on the way she played tonight."