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Katie O'Brien reaches Australian Open second round

AUSTRALIAN OPEN
Venue: Melbourne Park Date: 18-31 January
BBC coverage: Every Murray match live on BBC 1 or 2
Daily from 0830 GMT: live on BBC Red Button/website, 5 Live sports extra
Daily from 0000 GMT: text commentary on BBC Sport website

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Win is a big moment for me - O'Brien

Katie O'Brien overcame Austria's Patricia Mayr 6-3 6-3 to become the second British woman to reach round two of this year's Australian Open.

O'Brien followed up Elena Baltacha's win on Monday with a confident display.

She broke twice in the first set and held her nerve in a topsy-turvy second to set up a clash with Jelena Jankovic.

With Andy Murray also winning on Monday, all three of the Britons who reached the main draw of the singles are still involved in the tournament.

O'Brien's match was held over from Monday because of rain but the Hull player, ranked three places higher than Mayr at number 87, was quickly into her stride and took the game to her opponent in the early stages.

I think I dictated the play today and made her do the running and wore her down. It was a good solid performance

Katie O'Brien

Mayr put more pressure on the O'Brien serve in the second set and the pair traded four breaks in five games before the 23-year-old British number two steadied herself at 5-3 to serve out the match and complete victory in 74 minutes.

O'Brien was pleased with the consistency of her performance, saying: "I knew it was a good opportunity. I had a good draw and I knew I had to go out and compete.

"I think I dictated the play and made her do the running and wore her down. It was a good solid performance.

"I'm trying to add aggression to my game. There were a few points I was disappointed with where I let her in, but the first match of a Grand Slam is always tough.

"I think I settled down well though. I felt really good on court."

It is only the second time O'Brien has reached the second round of a Grand Slam, the other being at Wimbledon in 2007, and she now faces a tough test against eighth seed Jankovic.

Father delighted with O'Brien progress

The former world number one from Serbia beat Romania's Monica Niculescu 6-4 6-0 to book her place in round two.

"I don't know much about her. Didn't really watch her," said Jankovic when asked about O'Brien.

"Maybe my coach will do some research or whatever. But basically I go there and try to play my game. I will figure it out. Maybe it'll take me a little bit figure it out."

Meanwhile, in the men's singles, Louk Sorensen became the first Irishman to win a Grand Slam singles match in the Open Era.

The 25-year-old qualifier clinched a shock 6-4 3-6 6-2 6-1 victory over Taiwan's Yen-Hsun Lu, a player ranked 173 places above him.

Sorensen, who is based in Germany, had already become the first man from Ireland to reach the main draw of a Grand Slam since Matt Doyle lost in the first round in Melbourne in 1985.

The world number 284 will play 33rd seed John Isner of the United States in round two.

Asked how he felt to be Ireland's most successful player in Grand Slams, Sorensen told BBC Radio 5 live: "I didn't really realise that but I'm very proud and my whole family and friends are very proud, so it's a good thing.

"It was a tough match. I started off very well and then I felt a little injury in my leg, but I got through this and played very well, so I'm very happy now.

"The atmosphere was great, there were a lot of Irish supporters and it was amazing."



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see also
Australian Open day two photos
19 Jan 10 |  Tennis
Sorensen win rolls back the years
19 Jan 10 |  Tennis
Rampant Murray races to victory
18 Jan 10 |  Tennis
Baltacha battles into round two
18 Jan 10 |  Tennis
Women's singles draw
28 Jan 10 |  Tennis
Men's singles draw
26 Aug 11 |  Tennis
Tennis on the BBC
26 Oct 11 |  Tennis


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