Update on the latest sports
Day 5 at Melbourne
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) – The United States could have a rising star at the Australian Open, while a former star is making noise at Melbourne.
American teenager Amanda Anisimova knocked off 11th-seeded Aryna Sabalenka 6-3, 6-2 to reach the fourth round. The 17-year-old is the youngest player still in contention in the women’s draw after dropping just seven games against seeded players in the last two rounds.
Meanwhile, Maria Sharapova showed that she’s ready to be a Grand Slam factor once again by eliminating defending champion Caroline Wozniacki 6-4, 4-6, 6-3. The 30th-seeded Sharapova’s victory was built on aggressive groundstrokes that gave her a 37-10 edge in total winners, putting her in the fourth round against local favorite Ashleigh Barty. The 15th-seeded Barty advanced with a 7-5, 6-1 win over Maria Sakkari at Rod Laver Arena.
Fifth seed Sloane Stephens survived two tough tiebreak seats to beat Petra Martic and advance to the fourth round at Melbourne Park.
Danielle Collins has beaten No. 19-seeded Caroline Garcia 6-3, 6-2 at the Australian Open to reach the fourth round of a major for the first time.
Two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitovav beat Belinda Bencic 6-1, 6-4 and will next play Anisimova.
Second-seeded Angelique Kerber celebrated her birthday by dropping just one game against 240th-ranked wild-card entry Kimberly Birrell. Kerber, who won Grand Slam titles in Australia and the U.S. Open in 2016 and at Wimbledon last year, beat Birrell 6-1, 6-0 on the day she turned 31.
On the men’s side, six-time champion Roger Federer conceded only three points on his first serve in a 6-2, 7-5, 6-2 win over 21-year-old American Taylor Fritz. The defending champ was playing his 100th match on Rod Laver and advanced to the Round of 16 at a Grand Slam event for the 63rd time.
Former champion Rafael Nadal has given local hope Alex de Minaur another tennis lesson with a 6-1, 6-2, 6-4 win in the third round of the Australian Open. The last time the pair met at a Grand Slam, at Wimbledon last year, Nadal won by the same score.
Stefanos Tsitsipas won his third-round match by knocking off Nikoloz Basilashvili, 6-3, 3-6, 7-6, 6-4.
Frances Tiafoe (tee-AH’-foh) has advanced to the fourth round at Melbourne Park, his first appearance in the Round of 16 at any Grand Slam. The American, who turns 21 on Sunday, beat 34-year-old Andreas Seppi 6-7 (3), 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.
No. 6-seeded Marin Cilic (CHIHL’-ihch) overcame a pair of match points – including one double-faulted away by Fernando Verdasco – and a two-set deficit for a 4-6, 3-6, 6-1, 7-6 (8), 6-3 victory. Cilic, last year’s runner-up at Melbourne Park and the 2014 U.S. Open champion, saved a match point at 7-6 in the fourth-set tiebreaker with a service winner, then watched as Verdasco gave away another chance to win at 8-7 by failing to put a serve in play. Cilic then grabbed a 3-0 lead in the fifth set and held on to complete the comeback. It’s the seventh time in Cilic’s career that he has won a match after dropping the opening two sets.
WORLD CUP-WOMEN’S DOWNHILL
Vonn outside top 10 in her return from injury
CORTINA D’AMPEZZO, Italy (AP) – Lindsey Vonn has finished outside the top 10 in a World Cup downhill as she returned to competition Friday after injuring her left knee in November.
The American made an uncharacteristic mistake midway down and finished tied for 15th. She strugged with an icy gate and got bounced off her line on the upper portion of the course.
Vonn needs five more wins to break the all-time record of 86 held by Swedish standout Ingemar Stenmark.
Austrian skier Ramona Siebenhofer claimed her first World Cup victory with a near-perfect run, finishing 0.40 seconds ahead of world champion Ilka Stuhec of Slovenia. Stephanie Venier of Austria, the silver medalist at the 2017 worlds and Siebenhofer’s roommate, was third, 0.46 behind, on a course that was shortened due to overnight snowfall.
Patriarch of Wood Brothers Racing team Glen Wood dies at 93
UNDATED (AP) – Glen Wood, the patriarch of the famed Wood Brothers Racing team who had been the oldest living member of the NASCAR Hall of Fame, has died after a long illness in Stuart, Virginia. He was 93.
Wood, alongside younger brother Leonard, co-founded the Wood Brothers Racing team in 1953, and won four races over an 11-year racing career. Glen Wood in 1998 was named one of NASCAR’s 50 Greatest Drivers – a list that included 20 drivers who had once raced a Wood Brothers car.
Wood is also a member of Virginia Sports Hall of Fame and in 2011 was elected to the NASCAR Hall of Fame.