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Serena Sizzles As Osaka, Barty Struggle In Melbourne

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SerenaSerena Williams continued her impressive Australian Open preparations with a straight-set thrashing of Tsvetana Pironkova Wednesday, as world number three Naomi Osaka and top-ranked Ashleigh Barty struggled.

Williams, aiming for a record-equalling 24th Grand Slam title at the Australian Open, broke Pironkova first up and kept her foot on the gas with 25 winners and six aces.

The American will face compatriot Danielle Collins, who knocked out world number six Karolina Pliskova in straight sets, in the quarter-finals on Thursday.

Osaka and Barty, however, were pushed to the brink, but both avoided early exits at Melbourne Park.

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