Sofia Kenin out of Australian Open: While the reigning champion Sofia Kenin lost in the second round of the tournament on Thursday, Ashleigh Barty scored a straight-sets win in the Australian Open. 22-year-old Kenin, who followed her Grand Slam breakthrough at Melbourne Park last year, lost 6-3, 6-2 loss at the hands of World No. 65 Kaia Kanepi on Margaret Court Arena.
Interestingly, Kenin had beaten Barty in the semi-finals last year. This year, she lucked out, and incurred 22 unforced errors in the 64-minute contest.
“My head wasn’t there,” a tearful Sofia Kenin admitted in a post-match media conference. “Obviously I’m not going to take any credit away from her. She played really well at those good points. I had chances. I just couldn’t take it. I obviously know why because the nerves big-time got to me,” she added.
She also revealed that she was facing a left groin injury, which she said might have been attributed to the mandatory 14-day hotel quarantine on arrival in Australia.
I obviously know why because the nerves big-time got to me: Sofia Kenin out of Australian Open.
“I served really well today, I think this helped a lot,” 35-year-old Kanepi said post-match adding, “My gameplan was to play aggressive as I usually do.”
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) February 11, 2021
Kanepi will next play a third-round tie against Croatian Donna Vekic, who beat Argentine Nadia Podoroska in her second-round match on Thursday.
World number one Ashleigh Barty, on the other hand, beat Fed Cup teammate Daria Gavrilova in one hour and 32 minutes in the second round of the Australian Open.
Continuing her unbeaten return to the WTA Tour, Barty, with this win, has now advanced to the last-32 in Melbourne for the fifth consecutive year.
Feature Image Credit: USA Today