Serena grinds down dogged Strycova to reach quarter-finals

Reuters News
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Posted: Jan 22, 2017 9:38 PM

By Ian Ransom

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Serena Williams battled a misbehaving serve and scorching heat but stayed cool under pressure in a 7-5 6-4 win over Czech Barbora Strycova to reach the Australian Open quarter-finals on Monday.

Second seed Williams was broken three times in the opening set at Rod Laver Arena and again when coasting to the finish line in the second but shifted up a gear when it counted to close out the match in one hour and 46 minutes.

Williams, bidding to win a record 23rd grand slam title in the professional era, has now notched 10 consecutive quarter-final appearances at the majors, dating back to the 2014 U.S. Open.

The 35-year-old great next faces the winner of the match between Russian Ekaterina Makarova and British ninth seed Johanna Konta.

(Editing by ....)