Russia's Maria Sharapova celebrates after defeating Britain's Harriet Dart.
Russia’s Maria Sharapova celebrates after defeating Britain’s Harriet Dart.Source: AP

Five-time Grand Slam champion Maria Sharapova has made an early statement at the Australian Open.

The 31-year-old claimed the first double bagel of the tournament, taking just over an hour to beat British qualifier Harriet Dart 6-0, 6-0, who left the court in tears.

With the temperature starting to sear inside Rod Laver Arena and around Melbourne Park, the Russian ensured she spent as little time in the sun as possible on Monday, closing out the match in 63 minutes.

Russia's Maria Sharapova uses an ice towel during a break in her win over Harriet Dart.
Russia’s Maria Sharapova uses an ice towel during a break in her win over Harriet Dart.Source: AFP

The match wasn’t without mild controversy though.

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Boulter will face Belarusian Aryna Sabalenka, who won her first ever main draw match at the Australian Open, defeating Russian qualifier Anna Kalinskaya 6-1 6-4. Despite her lack of track record in Melbourne, Sabalenka is seeded 11th and is the third-favourite to win the whole tournament in betting markets.

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Fifth seed Kevin Anderson avoided a scare, dropping a set but eventually prevailing against Frenchman Adrian Mannarino 6-3 5-7 6-2 6-1.

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Women’s No.2 seed Angelique Kerber moved through to the second round in straight sets, defeating Polona Hercog 6-2 6-2.

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Australia’s top-ranked woman is in action later tonight, with No. 15 seed Ash Barty battling Luksika Kumkhum from 7pm.

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ORDER OF PLAY (All courts from 11am AEDT unless stated)

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Rod Laver Arena

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30-Maria Sharapova (RUS) def Harriet Dart (GBR), 6-0 6-0

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2-Rafael Nadal (ESP) def James Duckworth (AUS), 6-4 6-3 7-5

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2-Angelique Kerber (GER) def Polona Hercog (SLO), 6-2 6-2

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From 7pm

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Alison Van Uytvanck (BEL) v 3-Caroline Wozniacki (DEN)

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Denis Istomin (UZB) v 3-Roger Federer (SUI)

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Margaret Court Arena

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Danielle Collins (USA) def 14-Julia Georges (GER), 2-6 7-6(5) 6-4

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5-Sloane Stephens (USA) def Taylor Townsend (USA), 6-4 6-2

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27-Alex de Minaur (AUS) def Pedro Sousa (POR), 6-4 7-5 6-4

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From 7pm

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15-Ashleigh Barty (AUS) v Luksika Kumkhum (THA)

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6-Marin Cilic (CRO) v Bernard Tomic (AUS)

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Melbourne Arena

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5-Kevin Anderson (RSA) def Adrian Mannarino (FRA), 6-3 5-7 6-2 6-1

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Maria Sakkari (GRE) def 22-Jelena Ostapenko (LAT), 6-1 3-6 6-2

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Tomas Berdych (CZE) def 13-Kyle Edmund (GBR) 6-3, 6-0, 7-5

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Not before 6pm

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22-Roberto Bautista Agut (ESP) v Andy Murray (GBR)

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Not before 7pm

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8-Petra Kvitova (CZE) v Magdalena Rybarikova (SVK)

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1573 Arena

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19-Caroline Garcia (FRA) def Jessika Poncet (FRA), 6-2 6-3

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20-Grigor Dimitrov (BUL) def Janko Tipsarevic (SRB), 4-6 6-3 6-1 6-4

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9-Kiki Bertens (NED) def Alison Riske (USA), 6-3 6-3

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Not before 5pm

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Matthew Ebden (AUS) v Jan-Lennard Struff (GER)

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Court 3

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11-Aryna Sabalenka (BLR) def Anna Kalinskaya (RUS), 6-1 6-4

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14-Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE) def Matteo Berrettini (ITA), 6-7(3) 6-4 6-3 7-6(4)

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Yafan Wang (CHN) def Ellen Perez (AUS), 6-4 6-0

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Feliciano Lopez (ESP) v Jordan Thompson (AUS)

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Other Aussies in action

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Court 7

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First match: Astra Sharma (AUS) def Priscilla Hon (AUS), 7-5 4-6 6-1

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Second match: Kimberly Birrell (AUS) def Paula Badosa Gibert (ESP), 6-4 6-2

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Fourth match: Federico Delbonis (ARG) v John Millman (AUS)

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Court 8

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Second match: Zoe Hives (AUS) def Bethanie Mattek-Sands (USA), 6-1 6-2

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Court 13

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Second match: Thomas Fabbiano (ITA) def Jason Kubler (AUS), 6-4 7-6(1) 2-6 6-3

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Court 14

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Third match: Marc Polmans (AUS) v Denis Kudla (USA)

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Follow Day 1 of the 2019 Australian Open in our live blog below.

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If you can’t see it, tap here.

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Former US Open champion Sloane Stephens has been left frustrated by a question from an international journalist after her first round Australian Open win.

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The 2017 slam winner was asked about her coaching situation; she recently split with coach Kamau Murray, with reports suggesting the No.5 seed has started working with long-time adviser Sylvester Black.

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At first, Stephens said the situation was the same, even though she went on to say it was different.

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‘THEY HAVE TO COME TO ME’: RAFA’S SWIPE AT DJOKER AS UGLY WAR LOOMS

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AUS OPEN BLUNDER AS HISTORIC FIRST TURNS INTO CONFUSION

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THE DJOKER-LED ‘WAR’ SET TO DRIVE MEN’S TENNIS INTO CRISIS

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AUS OPEN CONFIDENTIAL: MURRAY’S CHEEKY WHACK FOR KYRGIOS

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“Coaching situation is the same. Everyone is still around. Like I said, Kamau and I needed a break, we are in a great space,” the American said.

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“I surrounded myself with people here that I have known for a long time that I’m comfortable with. I wanted to be happy and hopefully that would allow me to play better.”

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But when the journalist went for a follow-up question, things started to go astray.

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Asked, “so is Sly Black here with you?”, Stephens responded, “did you watch the match?

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“Sorry, I was watching another one I had to watch. Sorry,” the journalist said.

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Stephens responded, “did anyone watch the match?”

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After first getting a response of silence but then seeing some nodding heads, Stephens continued.

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“He’s here then because I know somebody knows. Okay. Sly’s here.”

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Another example of it being a good idea to not ask questions that will make you look stupid.

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