Serena Williams has begun her 2021 season with a convincing win over Daria Gavrilova at the WTA's Yarra Valley Classic Australian Open warm-up tournament.
The veteran has not featured since her withdrawal from the French Open at the end of September, where she beat Kristie Ahn but was not fit enough to face Tsvetana Pironkova in the second round.
She picks up her long quest for a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam win at the Australian Open and has recorded a convincing 6-1, 6-4 win over home hope Gavrilova.
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"It feels good to be back here," she said in her post-match press conference
I felt I was definitely composed and in a zone and trying to do the things I've been working on
"It was a good match for me. It wasn't easy at all. It was lots of rallies and lots of movement, and she's from here, so she obviously always plays hard.
"So it was really good and it felt good to clinch that in the end."

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Williams was not the only big name to record a win, with Karolina Pliskova defeating Elisabetta Cocciaretto 6-3, 6-2.
"I feel like I need some matches so I'm definitely happy that I'm through to the next round," the Czech said after the match.
I felt like I did a good job in the second set especially... and as the match went on, I felt I was playing better and better. I just need to find the rhythm again of playing tournaments and I thought it was a good start.
Pliskova's win sets up a meeting with Danielle Collins, who overcame Nina Stojanovic 6-2, 6-1. Vera Zvonareva defeated Pliskova's twin sister Kristyna 6-4, 6-7, 6-3, Marketa Vondrousova beat Varvara Gracheva 6-4, 6-0.
In an intriguing match-up, Pironkova saw off Donna Vekic 1-6, 6-4, 6-2, Alison van Uytvanck recorded a convincing 6-2, 6-0 win over Hsieh Su-wei and there were straight-sets wins for Nadia Podoroska, Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, Camila Giorgi and Greetje Minnen.
The 2021 Australian Open is live and exclusive on Eurosport. You can watch every moment on and the Eurosport app.
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21/09/2022 AT 05:22