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Serena Williams consoles Dayana Yastremska after emphatic Australian Open win

Serena Williams consoles Dayana Yastremska after emphatic Australian Open win

Coming to the year's first Grand Slam on a five-match losing streak and without a coach, Halep had to grind her way through the first two rounds with tough three-set wins.

However, Halep - whose 2018 season was cut short thanks to a back injury - looked to be on better form on Saturday as she broke in the fifth game and again in the seventh to win the first set 6-2.

Serena Williams of the USA celebrates her victory against Ukraine´s Dayana Yastremska during their women´s singles match on day six of the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne on January 19, 2019. "You did awesome. Don't cry". "You did really well", Williams told an emotional Yastremska after her victory on Rod Laver Arena.

Williams grabbed a pair of service breaks and a 4-0 lead after less than 15 minutes and was well on her way to yet another easy-looking win. "I'm really happy about the way I played, it's always a big challenge against the Williams sisters".

'Yeah, well, we still are fighting for equal prize money at all events across the board, ' she said in her post-match press conference.

Reigning French Open champion Simona Halep might be ranked No. 1 on the Women's Tennis Association tour, but as she prepares for the Round of 16 at the 2019 Australian Open, she's calling her next opponent the true worldwide No. 1. You also have to question how much Halep has left in the tank considering she has only a few matches under her belt since September.

When asked if she has ever experienced a similar reaction when playing a match in her teens, Williams said she did as a young player and as an adult. "I will play against a great champion and I have nothing to lose", said Halep after beating the elder Williams in a match lasting one and 16 minutes.

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"I honestly would love to face the World No. 1", Serena said.

It's the second time this week that someone Williams has beaten has cried after being beaten.

She was listless in her first two matches, complaining she was not at her best and grinding out three-set wins.

Yastremska was born in 2000, the year after Serena won her initial major, and grew up cheering for someone she calls "a legend". Yastremska recalls swinging her racket in the living room at home while watching on TV at age 8 as her favourite player competed.

After comforting the world No.57 on court, Williams took her aside in the changing rooms to tell she had been hard done to have received a time violation during the match. By the end of the first set, the teenager had 13 unforced errors, nine more than Serena.

"Everything. Small details. Her discipline. How (committed) she is to every ball", Yastremska said. "What I'm trying to do is to go to the level that people are going to talk about me the same, that I have something special".

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