Simona Halep sets up fourth round against Serena after dismissing Venus Williams

She said "you are young, you are very good and you will be a good player in the future".

Halep booked her fourth-round berth with a 6-2 6-3 victory over Serena's sister Venus on Saturday, the world number one cruising through in 77 minutes.

Legend Pat Cash praised Williams for her actions and said: "Serena is a lovely person, that was really nice to see actually".

Fresh off a 6-2, 6-3 defeat of Venus Williams at Margaret Court Arena, Halep is scheduled to face Williams' younger sister, Serena, on Sunday.

"It's always great to play against Serena because every time I have to learn something from the match".

So far, Williams has sailed through the Australian Open as she chases her 24th Grand Slam title, but her fourth-round opponent will be slightly stiffer competition. I will not super think about this because is nothing to think, just go there and play natural and with confidence.

"I think I have to play similar, if I can", Halep said, referring to her clash against the victor of 23 Grand Slam titles.

"If she thinks so", Yastremska added about Williams, "then maybe that's true".

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"I just want to try to play my best tennis", Halep said, "because I have nothing to lose".

Title-favorite Williams, who has been in devastating form at the season-opening Grand Slam, comforted the Odessa-born pro with encouragement, immediately approaching the world number 57, whose third-round showing is her best at a senior Grand Slam, at the end of the match after noticing she had become visibly upset, telling her "you did fantastic, don't cry".

"I could tell she was quite upset". But she played a great match. She came out swinging and to be so young, she came out ready to go.

Serena Williams of the USA (L) speaks with Ukraine´s Dayana Yastremska after winning their women´s singles match on day six of the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne on January 19, 2019.

Hsieh caused Osaka difficulties with her use of spins and angles appeared in command having won the opening set and leading 4-1 in the second only for the previously frustrated Japanese player to win 11 of the last 12 games. Halep broke again to open the second set but this time Williams managed to respond immediately.

"I remember one time in particular against Venus at Wimbledon, as I was walking to the net, I started bawling", she said. By the end of the first set, the teenager had 13 unforced errors, nine more than Serena.

"Yeah, not easy. I just have to give my best", Halep said. Both women have legitimate claims to being the top player in the game.

When Yastremska loosened up and became more comfortable with the setting, though, there were signs of what has made her a much talked about rising star.

  • Lawrence Cooper