Australian Open 2021 Results: Winners, Scores from Wednesday's Singles BracketFebruary 10, 2021
Novak Djokovic and Simona Halep faced more difficult tests than expected to reach the third round of the 2021 Australian Open on Wednesday.
The top-seeded man and second-seeded woman both dropped a set in Melbourne before recovering to advance to Friday's play.
Djokovic was unexpectedly tested in the second set by Frances Tiafoe, who pushed the world No. 1 to a third-set tiebreak.
Halep lost the first set to Ajla Tomljanovic and faced some difficulty before eventually closing her out in the third set.
The Romanian avoided an early upset, but Bianca Andreescu and Petra Kvitova were less fortunate. Their defeats busted open the portion of the bracket that includes Naomi Osaka.
Top Men's Results
No. 1 Novak Djokovic def. Frances Tiafoe, 6-3, 6-7 (3-7), 7-6 (7-2), 6-3
No. 3 Dominic Thiem def. Dominik Koepfer, 6-4, 6-0, 6-2
No. 6 Alexander Zverev def. Maxime Cressy, 7-5, 6-4, 6-3
No. 8 Diego Schwartzman def. Alexandre Muller, 6-2, 6-0, 6-3
No. 11 Denis Shapovalov def. Bernard Tomic, 6-1, 6-3, 6-2
No. 14 Milos Raonic def. Corentin Moutet, 6-7 (1-7), 6-1, 6-1, 6-4
No. 15 Pablo Carreno Busta def. Jan Vesely, 6-3, 7-6 (7-3), 2-6, 6-4
Marton Fucsovics def. No. 17 Stan Wawrinka, 7-6, 6-1, 4-6, 2-6, 7-6 (11-9)
No. 18 Grigor Dimitrov def. Alex Bolt, 7-6 (7-1), 6-1, 6-2
No. 20 Felix Auger-Aliassime def. James Duckworth, 6-4, 6-1, 6-2
No. 23 Dusan Lajovic def. Alexander Bublik, 6-4, 7-6 (7-4), 4-6, 6-3
No. 27 Taylor Fritz def. Reilly Opelka, 4-6, 7-6 (8-6), 6-7 (4-7), 7-6 (7-5), 6-2
Nick Kyrgios def. No. 29 Ugo Humbert, 5-7, 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (7-2), 6-4
No. 32 Adrian Mannarino def. Miomir Kecmanovic, 6-1, 6-2, 6-4
Although Tiafoe didn't beat Djokovic, he deserves credit for pushing the top seed to his limits in the second and third sets.
The 23-year-old American finished with just three fewer aces and six more unforced errors than the Australian Open champion.
Djokovic eventually overpowered Tiafoe in the fourth set, after converting two of his three break points and winning 22 percent more points on his second serve.
The Serb told reporters he was just happy to survive such a tough early match.
"He pushed me to the very limit," Djokovic said. "He's a very quick player. It's unpredictable what comes next ... I'm really glad to overcome such a battle."
Djokovic will face another American in the third round after No. 27 seed Taylor Fritz won a five-set thriller with three tiebreaks over his countryman, Reilly Opelka.
Dominic Thiem and Alexander Zverev both cruised to three-set victories in their second-round matches.
Thiem faces the most interesting third-round contest of any of the top seeds, as he will take on Nick Kyrgios.
The Australian battled back from a set down to defeat No. 29 Ugo Humbert in front of the raucous home crowd that should be in his favor on Friday.
Humbert and No. 17 Stan Wawrinka were the only seeded men to fall on Wednesday. Seven of the 32 seeds have been eliminated on the men's side.
Top Women's Results
No. 2 Simona Halep def. Ajla Tomljanovic, 4-6, 6-4, 7-5
No. 3 Naomi Osaka def. Caroline Garcia, 6-2, 6-3
No. 7 Aryna Sabalenka def. Daria Kasatkina, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3
Hsieh Su-Wei def. No. 8 Bianca Andreescu, 6-3, 6-2
Sorana Cirstea def. No. 9 Petra Kvitova, 6-4, 1-6, 6-1
No. 10 Serena Williams def. Nina Stojanovic, 6-3, 6-0
No. 14 Garbine Muguruza def. Liudmila Samsonova, 6-3, 6-1
No. 15 Iga Swiatek def. Camila Giorgi, 6-2, 6-4
Fiona Ferro def. No. 17 Elena Rybakina, 6-4, 6-4
No. 19 Marketa Vondrousova def. Rebecca Marino, 6-1, 7-5
No. 27 Ons Jabeur def. Anna Karolina Schmiedlova, 6-3, 6-2
No. 32 Veronika Kudermetova def. Varvara Gracheva, 5-7, 6-2, 6-2
Halep had her hands full with Tomljanovic for three sets. The two-time Grand Slam champion rallied from 2-5 down in the third set to remain alive in the bottom half of the women's bracket.
The 29-year-old finished with a better winning percentage on first serve and took advantage of the break points she earned. She won eight of 14 break points, while Tomljanovic won seven of her 17 chances.
The No. 2 seed is on the side of the bottom half of the bracket that still contains Serena Williams and Iga Swiatek, who she would have to face in the fourth round and quarterfinals, respectively.
Swiatek and Williams lost nine combined games in their second-round matches. Williams won 86 percent of her first-serve points and denied three break-point opportunities to Nina Stojanovic.
Osaka has a clearer path to the semifinals after the upsets suffered by Andreescu and Kvitova. Garbine Muguruza is the biggest challenge left for her in the next three rounds.
Andreescu was stunned by Hsieh Su-Wei at the start of Wednesday's action. The No. 8-seeded Canadian only won five games in the match.
Kvitova joined her on the list of surprise early exits shortly after, when she was blown away in the third set by Sorana Cirstea.
The Romanian dominated every stat category in the third set, as she won 67 percent of her first-serve points and 43 percent of her receiving points.
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Statistics obtained from AusOpen.com.