Brisbane International: Maria Sharapova defeats Yaroslava Shvedova in straight sets
Last Updated: 06/01/15 12:50pm
Maria Sharapova began 2015 in ruthless fashion as she brushed aside Yaroslava Shvedova 6-0 6-1 in the second round of the Brisbane International.
The top seed dominated her opponent in every department as she raced through the first set in just 23 minutes.
Shvedova, a qualifier from Kazakhstan, offered more resistance in the second but was no match for her Russian opponent.
Sharapova had not played a competitive match since the WTA Finals in October but there were no signs of rust as she cruised into the quarter-finals.
"It certainly felt good to start (well) after not playing a match for a couple of months," said Sharapova.
Despite all the training, it's such a different feeling to go out on the court and play in front of a crowd in an actual match atmosphere.
"Despite all the training, it's such a different feeling to go out on the court and play in front of a crowd in an actual match atmosphere.
"I wanted to start off sharp and try to do the right things."
Sharapova broke her opponent five times throughout the match, but had to save two break points on her own serve in the second set.
"She lost the first set in her previous match (against Sabine Lisicki) 6-0 and ended up winning the match in a tough three-set battle, so you never know," said Sharapova.
"There were moments where I saved a few important break points, which was crucial. That gave me good confidence towards the end of that second set."
Sharapova will now play the winner of the clash between seventh seed Carla Suarez Navarro of Spain and Croatia's Mirjana Lucic-Baroni.
Earlier, third-seeded German Angelique Kerber remained on course for a semi-final showdown against Sharapova when she crushed Russian qualifier Daria Gavrilova in straight sets.
Kerber needed just 90 minutes to see off Brisbane-based Gavrilova 6-3 7-5 and will now take on Ukraine’s Elina Svitolina, who was a 6-3 6-2 winner over Croatian Ajla Tomljanovic.