Tennis – Australian Open – First Round – Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne, Australia, January 14, 2019. Russia’s Maria Sharapova waves to spectators at her match against Britain’s Harriet Dart. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Former champion Maria Sharapova gave hapless Harriet Dart a 6-0 6-0 shellacking to fly into the second round of the Australian Open on Monday.
In the opening match on Rod Laver Arena’s center court, the 30th seed was all over the British qualifier from the first point, wrapping up the first set in 31 minutes in a barrage of power hitting.
Dart saved two match points to stall Sharapova’s win but sprayed a clumsy volley wide to fall on the third.
Sharapova will play Swede Rebecca Peterson for a place in the third round.
Editing by Nick Mulvenney