Samantha Stosur's horror story at her home Grand Slam continued when the Australian blew a 5-2 lead in the third set to succumb to Zheng Jie 6-4 1-6 7-5 in the second round of the Australian Open. Stosur has now lost seven of her last nine matches in Australia (including the first rounds in Brisbane and Sydney this year) and has never been past the fourth round at Melbourne Park in eleven tries.
Stosur dropped the first set in 54 minutes, but her 5-2 lead in the third set made it look like she was on a good way to victory before the bad statistical fact that she had won only six Grand Slam matches from 37 tries after losing the first set came to haunt her. Stosur twice failed to serve it out and then dropped serve yet again, giving out the match with a double fault. Interestingly, Zheng has won four matches since Tokyo last year and two of them against Stosur.
The loss of Australian highest-ranked player makes the Australian Open women's singles draw without home players after Day 3.
Maria Sharapova advanced to the third round with her second straight double bagel! Actually, she's the first woman to have done so at a Grand Slam since 1985, before Sharapova was even born! In the first round her victim was Olga Puchkova in 55 minutes and today Misaki Doi in 47 minutes. Can you believe this: Sharapova has lost an average of just 1.5 games per match in the first week of non-grass majors in 2012/2013! (sources: Sydney Morning Herald, Chris Skelton's Twitter, photo: © Neal Trousdale)