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Australian Open 2020: Serena Williams, Federer, Coco Gauff advance

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• Fortunately, the meteorological concern on Day One: rain, and not air quality. After so much discussion, quite rightly, about this event and its ability to handle unsafe conditions wrought by the bushfires ravaging so much of the country, conditions today were merely damp, not dangerous. Some 32 first round matches were cancelled or moved on Monday due to rain delays. Mother Nature is a fickle character. Who knows what she has in mind for the next 13 days—which way she’ll blow her winds, whether the atmosphere will have the equivalent of a fever? But for all the talk about delaying—or even cancelling— this event, air quality was, happily, a non-issue today.

• Serena Williams is 38 years old, ranked No. 8 and hasn’t won a major in three years. And you would never know any of it watching her today. Armed with butane torches off both wings, she didn’t so much beat Anastasia Potapova 6-0, 6-3 as she performed a public humiliation. This marked Serena’s 350 match win at a major—only Federer has more—and she looked very much like a player capable of winning six more. Serena’s troubles of late, of course, have come in the trophy-adjacent rounds, not in the early rounds. But what a way to kick off her campaign.

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