Frances Tiafoe competes at the Australian Open on Jan. 16, 2019 in Melbourne.
Some of the top U.S. women in tennis cruised through the second round at the Australian Open, including four-time Olympic gold medalists Serena and Venus Williams.
Serena Williams, the No. 16 seed in the tournament, had an easy time with Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard and got through to the third round with a 6-2, 6-2 victory in one of the final matches of the round.
Venus Williams needed a tiebreaker against France's Alize Cornet but swept the third set, 6-3, 4-6, 6-0.
No. 5 Sloane Stephens also moved on with an easy 6-3, 6-1 victory over Hungary’s Timea Babos, and No. 17 Madison Keys notched a 6-3, 6-4 win over Russia’s Anastasia Potapova.
Also in second round action, Danielle Rose Collins defeated fellow American Sachia Vickery, 6-3, 7-5, and Amanda Anisimova upset No. 24 seed Lesia Tsurenko, 6-0, 6-2, of Ukraine. In addition to Vickery, Team USA’s Sofia Kenin and Madison Brengle were eliminated.
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On the men’s side, the story of the second round was 20-year-old Frances Tiafoe upsetting No. 5 seed Kevin Anderson of South Africa, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4, 7-5. It was the biggest upset of the tournament so far. The 39th-ranked Tiafoe had lost to Anderson four times last year and had lost his last six matches against top 10 opponents. The third-round appearance matches his best-ever performance at a Grand Slam event, after making the third round at Wimbledon last year.
In other men’s action, Taylor Fritz outlasted Frenchman Gael Monfils in a long five-set match, 6-3, 6-7 (8), 7-6 (6), 7-6 (5), and will face six-time Australian Open champ Roger Federer in the next round. Ryan Harrison, Michael McDonald, Reilly Opelka and Denis Kudla were eliminated at this stage.
While Serena Williams won her most recent Australian Open title in 2017, an American man hasn’t won a singles title since 2003, when Andre Agassi defeated Rainer Schuettler. The tournament runs through Jan. 27.
Karen Price is a reporter from Pittsburgh who has covered Olympic sports for various publications. She is a freelance contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.