Casey Dellacqua chasing revenge at Australian Open
CASEY Dellacqua will chase revenge as well as respect when she takes on young American Madison Keys in the second round of the Australian Open today.
The 29-year-old hit out at suggestions that Australia's female players weren't being given enough credit, after much of the build-up to the tournament focused on up-and-coming male players including Nick Kyrgios, Bernard Tomic and Thanasi Kokkinakis.
"I don't think the women are struggling too much. We have two women inside the top 30, which I know the men don't have," the No.29 seed said.
"I think sometimes the women get a little bit of a hard time. We've got Sam (Stosur) and myself who day in and day out try and perform as athletes the best we can."
Dellacqua, Stosur and adopted Aussie Ajla Tomljanovic will all have the chance to fly the flag when they take on a trio of Americans - Keys, Coco Vandeweghe and Varvara Lepchenko - in today's second-round action.
Dellacqua has played Keys - 10 years her junior - just once, with the American world No.33 claiming a 6-4 7-6 victory in the first round of the 2013 Australian Open.
That result aside, the Aussie left-hander's best performances in grand slam tournaments have been in her home Open, twice reaching the fourth round - 2008 and 2014.
Unfortunately the same doesn't apply for Stosur, who takes on world No.37 Coco Vanderweghe.
The Queenslander is playing in her 13th Australian Open, and has reached the fourth round just twice despite spending much of her career ranked inside the top 10 in the world.
Fortunately for the No.20 seed, the American's record in big tournaments is not great.
Prior to this year, Vandeweghe has made 16 appearances in grand slam events, going out 11 times in the first round and the other five in the second.
Their head-to-head record stands at 1-1, Stosur having won the first meeting at the 2011 US Open on the way to her first grand slam title, while the American equalled the ledger with a three-set victory in the third round of last year's Miami Masters.
While Dellacqua and Stosur have been carrying the flag for the Aussie women for the best part of a decade, Tomljanovic, who was born in Croatia but moved to Queensland from Florida last November and is playing under the Australian flag in Melbourne, looks to have the firepower to join the pair inside the top 30.
Ranked 67 in the world, the 21-year-old overcame nerves to beat American Shelby Rogers 4-6 6-4 6-0 in the first round, and faces Uzbekistan-born American Varvara Lepchenko today.
The other Australian in action today is veteran Lleyton Hewitt who takes on unseeded German Benjamin Becker.
AUSSIES IN ACTION:
Sam Stosur v Coco Vandeweghe
Casey Dellacqua v Madison Keys
Ajla Tomljanovic v Varvara Lepchenko
Lleyton Hewitt v Benjamin Becker