As the Australian Open Tennis Tournament got underway down under on Sunday evening Coco Gauff beat Venus Williams in the first round for the second time in three Grand Slam tournaments.
The 15-year-old Gauff followed up her upset over Williams at Wimbledon last year with a 7-6 (5), 6-3 win over the 39-year-old, seven-time major winner at the Australian Open.
While play was suspended on all outside courts because of heavy rain over Melbourne, Gauff went to work under the roof on Margaret Court Arena. She served an ace to set up triple match point and converted with a drop shot, which Williams couldn’t retrieve in time.
Gauff was playing her first match in the main draw at Melbourne Park. Williams was in the main draw of a major for an Open Era-record 85th time.
Other first day wins and losses:
Serena Williams, 38, did what her older sister couldn’t” defeat a teen. Other than a brief second-set blip Serena had very little trouble getting past 18-year-old Anastasia Potapova of Russian 6-0, 6-3 to begin her latest bid for a 24th Grand Slam singles championship.
Naomi Osaka outbattled Marie Bouzkova to open play on Rod Laver Arena, advancing into the second round in straight sets. Osaka, former world No. 1, surged through a tricky 6-2, 6-4 victory over the rising Czech star.
Sloan Stephens was beaten in the first round for the second time in three years. She was defeated by Zhang Shuai 2-6, 7-5, 6-2. ZhangNo. 35 seed in the tournament. Stephans was seeded 24th.