Stosur's losing streak goes on in Open fadeout
SAMANTHA Stosur's summer of discontent has continued with a three-set first-round defeat to Briton Heather Watson at the Australian Open.
The 18th seed's 3-6 6-3 0-6 defeat was her ninth successive loss since the US Open five months ago.
Stosur's first-round exits at the Brisbane International, Sydney International and now in Melbourne means the Australian one-time grand slam champion is winless over an Australian summer for the first time since her Melbourne Park debut in 2002 as a teenager.
The 32-year-old, who has never made it past the fourth round at her home grand slam, started well, breaking her opponent to take a 2-0 lead.
But she lost six of the next seven games in an all-too-familiar collapse to drop the first set.
The second set followed the same pattern and after holding in a marathon seventh game to go 5-2 up, Stosur held her nerve to take the set 6-3.
The final set's first game was pivotal. It lasted just over nine minutes but once she lost it, the fight seemed to go from Stosur and she capitulated to bow out after two-and-a-quarter hours.
"I had a slow start in both the first two sets so I wanted to get off to a good start (in the third),” Watson said.
"I wanted to make her work for everything - and I did.”
There were defeats for other Aussies on day two.
Alex Bolt's maiden Australian Open win looked possible when he took the second set against Yoshihito Nishioka but the Japanese player proved too strong for the 24-year-old qualifier, winning 6-4 1-6 6-2 6-4.
Queensland wildcard Lizette Cabrera also went out in round one, losing in straight sets to Croatian Donna Vekic on the Aussie's grand slam debut.
The 19-year-old went down 7-5 6-2 to the world No.99.
Fellow Aussie Arina Rodionova was also sent packing in the first round, losing to 17th seed Caroline Wozniacki 6-1 6-2.