MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Third-seeded Simona Halep advanced to the third round of the Australian Open with a 6-2, 6-2 win over Australian Jarmila Gajdosova in a match that finished early Thursday morning.
Halep and Gajdosova didn’t start their match on Rod Laver Arena until nearly midnight due to the length of the preceding five-setter in which Rafael Nadal beat American qualifier Tim Smyczek in 4 hours, 12 minutes.
The 23-year-old Halep received help from the Australian when Gajdosova double-faulted on break point in the seventh game of the second set.
Halep, who opened the season by winning the Shenzhen Open in China, was a quarterfinalist at last year’s Australian Open, losing to eventual finalist Dominika Cibulkova.
The Romanian will next play American Bethanie Mattek-Sands.
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