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Sunday August 18th, 2019 7:04AM

The Latest: Nishikori advances, rival retires in the 5th set

By The Associated Press
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MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — The Latest on Tuesday at the Australian Open (all times local):

2:05 p.m.

Kei Nishikori rallied from two sets down and won 10 consecutive games before Kamil Majchrzak retired with the score at 3-6, 6-7 (6), 6-0, 6-2, 3-0 at Margaret Court Arena.

Nishikori had a chance to win the second set, up 30-0 on the Polish player's serve at 5-4. But he let Majchrzak back into the game and when the set went to a tiebreaker, two unforced errors by Nishikori handed his opponent the set.

Those mistakes riled Nishikori between the second and third sets, obviously upset with himself as he placed ice cubes in a plastic bag on the back of his neck.

He came out firing to start the third set and his 10-game streak and 15 of the last 17 before Majchrzak had enough and stopped the match.___

1:40 p.m.

Serena Williams was relentless in her first appearance at Melbourne Park since winning the title in 2017, losing only five points in the opening set on her way to a 6-0, 6-2 win over Tatjana Maria in just 49 minutes.

The 23-time major winner didn't defend her title last year while she was taking time off following the birth of her daughter.

Maria wasn't helped by her woeful serving — she made only three of 14 first serves in the opening set.

Williams gave Maria, who also has a daughter, a warm embrace at the end of the match.

The 16th-seeded Williams will face either Eugenie Bouchard or wild-card entry Peng Shuai in the second round.

____

12:50 p.m.

An Australian Open line judge was taken from the court for several minutes after being hit by a ball during a first-round men's singles match between Fabio Fognini and Jaume Munar.

After being hit in the lower back by a serve from Munar, the woman was checked by medical officials and returned to continue officiating on the baseline of the match at one of Melbourne Park's minor show courts.

After Munar apologized, the match was halted for several minutes. A replacement official took over briefly before the line judge returned, receiving loud applause from the crowd.

____

12:25 p.m.

Former U.S. Open finalist Madison Keys beat Australian wild-card entry Destanee Aiava 6-2, 6-2 to open play at Rod Laver Arena on Day 2 of the Australian Open.

Keys broke Aiava's serve in the third game of the second set to go up 2-1, then again in the seventh game thanks in part to an Aiava double-fault and two forehand errors.

Keys' best result at Melbourne Park was in 2015 when she beat Venus Williams and Petra Kvitova en route to the semifinals, where she lost to Serena Williams. She also made the quarterfinals last year, losing to 2016 champion Angelique Kerber.

The now 18-year-old Aiava had the distinction of being the first male or female player born in this century to play in a main draw Grand Slam singles match when she received a wild card in 2017. She lost in the first round.

Another early winner Tuesday was seventh-seeded Karolina Pliskova, who beat Czech qualifier Karolina Muchova 6-3, 6-2.

___

11:35 a.m.

Novak Djokovic and Serena Williams, with 13 Australian Open titles between them, play their first-round matches Tuesday at what is expected to be a steamy Melbourne Park.

Williams, who has seven Australian titles and last won here in 2017, plays Tatjana Maria in the second match at Rod Laver Arena.

Top-seeded Djokovic, who will attempt to win a men's record seventh Australian title, opens night play on the same court against American Mitchell Krueger.

The temperature was already 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit) when play began on all courts shortly after 11 a.m. local time and it was expected to rise by several degrees.

The sun and humidity added to the sultry conditions, forcing many of the early spectators to take relief by standing under giant cooling mist machines.

___

More AP Tennis: https://www.apnews.com/apf-Tennis and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Tennis, AP Sports - Men's Tennis, AP Sports - Women's Tennis
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