Australian Open: Ying-Ying Duan records victory over Rebecca Sramkova

Australian Open: Ying-Ying Duan records victory over Rebecca Sramkova

The big hitter from China was steady in defeating the debutant from Slovakia.

John Lupo

Ying-Ying Duan picked up her first career win at the Australian Open, defeating Slovakian qualifier Rebecca Sramkova 6-3, 6-4 to reach the second round.

Duan makes fast start, rides early momentum to capture first set

Sramkova was making her main draw debut at a major and early nerves were apparent as Duan, using her powerful serve and groundstrokes, held to love and had 15-40 on the Slovakian's serve. Sramkova saved one break point with a forehand winner, but the Chinese grabbed the break when her own forehand drew a netted reply.

The Slovakian would respond, breaking back only to see Duan break again when Sramkova missed a forehand at 30-40 to hand the Chinese player the lead again at 3-1. Now in front once again, Duan coasted through the remainder of the set as she held her final three games comfortably to take the opening set in 28 minutes.

Duan presented with more of a challenge, fights off late Sramkova chances to take victory

With how easily Duan was holding, she sought a quick start in the second set and at 30-30, Sramkova presented her that chance with a double-fault to set up break point. When the Slovakian's forehand flew wide on the next point, the Chinese was in the ascendancy, but as was the case in the first set, Sramkova eventually broke back, this time in the fourth game to level the set at 2-2.

It wouldn't be long before Duan was in front again when at 15-30, Sramkova would double fault for the fifth time in the match to bring up two break points at 15-40. Duan struck a lcean forehand winner up the line to take the lead 3-2.

Sramkova would have her chances, a break point in the sixth game and three more in the tenth and final game before Duan closed it out to advance to a second round matchup with American Varvara Lepchenko. Their only prior meeting was just last week in the final qualifying round in Sydney with Duan running out a 6-1, 6-4 winner.

Key stats

Duan used her big serve to hit six aces while winning an astonishing 83% of her first serve points (15/18).