The latest: Sharapova routing qualifier at Australian Open

The latest: Sharapova routing qualifier at Australian Open

Associated Press

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) – The newest on Monday at the Australian Open: (all times local):

12:20

Maria Sharapova stepped as fast as she could from the heat of Melbourne, needed only 63 minutes to beat the British qualifier Harriet Dart 6-0, 6-0 in the first match at Rod Laver Arena during the Australian Open in this year .

Sharapova, who wore an ice collar during the breaks to help ease the temperature of 30 degrees Celsius (86 Fahrenheit), made her 15th appearance with the season-opening major.

The only breaking point Sharapova faced was when she made a double mistake in the fifth game of the second set.

Dart, who described Sharapova as her idol for the game, lost in Wimbledon last year in the first round after receiving a wild card in her only previous Grand Slam singles performance.

Maria Sharapova, Russia, rests during her first round match against Great Britain Harriet Dart on her seat during the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Maria Sharapova, Russia, rests during her first round match against Great Britain Harriet Dart on her seat during the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

22-year-old Dart had a point in serving in the eighth game of the game, but Sharapova rallied to break the British player and continue the routing.

Another British player, Heather Watson, also lost early on the first day, 6-1, 6-2 defeated by Petra Martic, placed 31st.

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10:30 AM in the morning.

Maria Sharapova will be the first of five former champions to play at Rod Laver Arena on day one of the Australian Open.

Sharapova, who won her only Australian title 11 years ago, played in the opening match Harriet Dart on Monday. Rafael Nadal, who won his only Australian title in 2009, would play James Duckworth, followed by 2016 winner Angelique Kerber against Polona Hercog.

Defending champion Caroline Wozniacki played Alison Van Utyvanck to start the nocturnal session, followed by the game by six-time Australian champion Roger Federer against Denis Istomin.

The night session in the midfield would start with a ceremony in honor of the man himself, Rod Laver, about the birthday of his second Grand Slam or singles majors in 1969.

The temperature was 26 degrees Celsius (79 Fahrenheit) when players warmed up for the opening games and were expected to rise to 34C (93F) later in the day.

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Russian Maria Sharapova returns to Harriet Dart in Great Britain for their first round at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Russian Maria Sharapova returns to Harriet Dart in Great Britain for their first round at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Russian Maria Sharapova returns to Harriet Dart in Great Britain for their first round at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Harriet Dart from Great Britain makes a backhand back to Russia & # 39; s Maria Sharapova during their first round match at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Harriet Dart from Great Britain makes a backhand back to Russia & # 39; s Maria Sharapova during their first round match at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Harriet Dart from Great Britain makes a backhand back to Russia & # 39; s Maria Sharapova during their first round match at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Russian Maria Sharapova returns to Harriet Dart in Great Britain for their first round at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Russian Maria Sharapova returns to Harriet Dart in Great Britain for their first round at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Russian Maria Sharapova returns to Harriet Dart in Great Britain for their first round at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Australian tennis legends Evonne Goolagong Cawley and Rod Laver hold the women's and men's trophies, the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup and the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup at the official start of the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Australian tennis legends Evonne Goolagong Cawley and Rod Laver hold the women's and men's trophies, the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup and the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup at the official start of the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

Australian tennis legends Evonne Goolagong Cawley and Rod Laver hold the women's and men's trophies, the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup and the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup at the official start of the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, January 14, 2019. (AP Photo / Aaron Favila)

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