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Page last updated at 07:25 GMT, Thursday, 14 January 2010

Laura Robson and Naomi Cavaday progress in qualifiers

AUSTRALIAN OPEN
Venue: Melbourne Park Date: 18-31 January
Coverage: Every Andy Murray match live on BBC 1 or 2
Daily from 0830 GMT: live on BBC Red Button/website, 5 Live sports extra
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Laura Robson
Robson is looking to build on her success in Perth last week

Britons Laura Robson and Naomi Cavaday were made to work hard to reach round two of Australian Open qualifying on Thursday, while Melanie South lost.

Robson, 15, a wildcard entry after reaching the Hopman Cup final with Andy Murray last week, beat Australian hopeful Sophie Ferguson 6-4 2-6 6-4.

Cavaday, 20, beat Russian Alexandra Panova 3-6 7-6 6-3 and will next face world number 16 Yanina Wickmayer.

South, 23, rarely threatened American Shenay Perry in a 6-3 6-3 defeat.

Both of the British men in action today were also eliminated.

Alex Bogdanovic lost his second-round match against Turkey's Marsel Ilhan 6-4 6-4 while James Ward also succumbed in straight sets to Illya Marchenko 6-3 6-4.

Dan Evans is the only Briton left in the men's qualifying competition and plays in the second round on Friday.

Robson, ranked 406 in the world, continued her fine form but had to overcome a few nervy moments in the final set against the 23-year-old Ferguson, 148th in the rankings.

The Briton, who beat Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez, the world number 26, in the Hopman Cup final in Perth, let a 3-0 lead slip before breaking back to secure a hard-earned victory.

Robson will next play 21-year-old Michaella Krajicek, who reached the third round at the Australian Open in 2006, and said: "I can't remember the last time I played like that. It was really windy, and I obviously didn't play my best tennis.

606: DEBATE
the trampled skunk

"But I hung in there and stayed consistent. Throughout the match my service games weren't solid at all, so I tried to give myself the best chance to break her."

Cavaday had an equally tough test and was delighted with her tactics having lost the opening set to her Russian opponent.

"In the third I just came out firing," the left-hander said. "I wasn't afraid to take it to her.

"I'd got to that situation by hitting winners and by taking her wide and taking risks. If I'd played it safe and just gone up the middle all the time I probably would have ended up losing.

"I did really well to come through in the end and I'm really pleased."

With two more rounds of qualifying to reach before the main draw, Cavaday has an almighty task in round two when she faces Belgium's Wickmayer.

The world number 16 won the ASB Classic tournament in Auckland on Sunday but has had to go through qualifying for the Australian Open because a one-year ban for a doping offence was lifted after the Melbourne main draw line-up was confirmed.



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see also
GB trio win openers in qualifying
13 Jan 10 |  Tennis
GB players look to impress Lloyd
12 Jan 10 |  Tennis
Early exits for Baltacha and Ward
05 Jan 10 |  Tennis


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