Tennis: Heat Is On As Stars Struggle At Aussie Open

Tennis: Heat is on as stars struggle at Aussie Open

MELBOURNE, , (Pakistan Point News - APP - 16th Jan, 2017 ) - World number one Andy Murray fought his way into the second round as several top players struggled in hot conditions on day one at the Australian Open on Monday. As temperatures topped 32 Celsius (90 Fahrenheit), Murray came through a two hours, 47 minutes test against Ukraine's Illya Marchenko 7-5, 7-6 (7/5), 6-2. He fared better than women's fourth seed Simona Halep, who was an early casualty, and Kei Nishikori and Marin Cilic, who were both taken to five sets.

Players draped themselves with towels packed with ice on a sweltering afternoon. Temperatures are set to rise further on Tuesday to a sizzling 38 Celsius. "I've never won here," said Murray, who has lost a record five finals at Melbourne Park. "Lost in the final a few times so I'm hoping to go one better this time." Halep is rated as the fastest player, male or female, over three metres but her usual zip was glaringly absent as she went down 6-3, 6-1 to American rising star Shelby Rogers. Afterwards she said a knee injury had slowed her down as she succumbed in the Australian Open's first round for the second consecutive year.