Murray advances, Ivanovic loses amid medical distraction
Garbine Muguruza of Spain walks from the court during a change of ends in her third round match against Barbora Strycova of the Czech Republic at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, Jan. 23, 2016.(AP Photo/Vincent Thian)
MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Andy Murray advanced to the fourth round and left the court immediately to check on the welfare of his father-in-law, who needed urgent medical treatment while watching Ana Ivanovic play on a nearby court at the Australian Open.
Four-time finalist Murray had a 6-2, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2 victory over No. 32 Joao Sousa on Saturday night and signed a few autographs but skipped the usual on-court interview before leaving Margaret Court Arena.
Nigel Sears, father of Murray's pregnant wife, Kim, coaches Ivanovic and was working in that capacity at Rod Laver Arena when he became ill after the first set, needed treatment and was taken to a nearby hospital.
Ivanovic was leading Madison Keys 6-4, 1-0 before an almost one-hour delay. She knew it was Sears getting treatment before the players left the court for the match suspension. She returned to go up a break, but Keys leveled the match and then, after going down another break, won five straight games on the way to clinching a 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 win.
Ivanovic and Keys left the court without commenting, although a stadium announcer assured the crowd that Sears was OK, and had asked for a TV to be wheeled into his hospital room to watch the end of the match.
Ivanovic's second-round match had also been suspended when a woman fell down a set of stairs in the upper level of the same stadium.
Earlier, two-time champion Victoria Azarenka dropped her opening service game without winning a point, but recovered quickly to beat Japanese qualifier Naomi Osaka 6-1, 6-1 win in 56 minutes. Azarenka is growing as a favorite in the bottom half of the draw after No. 2 Simona Halep went out in the first round and No. 3 Garbine Muguruza lost in the third round.
Azarenka will next play No. 48-ranked Barbora Strycova, who upset 2015 Wimbledon finalist Muguruza 6-3, 6-2.
''I will enjoy myself first because I beat No. 3 in the world,'' Strycova said.
Sydney-born Johanna Konta became the first British woman to reach the fourth round at the Australian Open since 1987 when she beat Denisa Allertova 6-2, 6-2. Her next match is against 2015 semifinalist Ekaterina Makarova, who had a 6-3, 6-2 win over No. 9 Karolina Pliskova.
Muguruza's loss left No. 7 Angelique Kerber as the highest-ranked player in the bottom half of the women's draw. Kerber beat Madison Brengle 6-1, 6-3 to move into a fourth-round match against fellow German Annika Beck and a potential quarterfinal with Azarenka.
Milos Raonic dedicated his third-round victory, a 6-2, 6-3, 6-4 win over Viktor Troicki on Margaret Court Arena, to victims of a shooting in a remote community in Saskatchewan, Canada which left four people dead and at least two injured.
''Today, before I stepped out on court it was a difficult day back home,'' the 25-year-old Canadian told the crowd. ''I want to take a moment and give thoughts to that community. Today's victory was for that community, and a quick recovery and all of Canada, and I'm sure the world is behind you.''
Raonic faces a tough fourth-rounder against Stan Wawrinka, the 2014 Australian and 2015 French Open champion, who advanced with a 6-2, 6-3, 7-6 (3) victory over Lukas Rosol.
No. 8-seeded David Ferrer overwhelmed Steve Johnson 6-1, 6-4, 6-4 and to set up a meeting with another American in the next round. No. 10-seeded John Isner, who fired 44 aces as he advanced with a 6-7 (8), 7-6 (5), 6-2, 6-4 win over Feliciano Lopez.