Result: Maria Sharapova eases past Venus Williams

Result: Sharapova eases past Venus
© AP Photos
Maria Sharapova continues her fine form at the Australian Open by beating Venus Williams in straight sets to reach round four.

Maria Sharapova has continued her fine form at the Australian Open by beating Venus Williams 6-1 6-3 to reach round four.

Sharapova had won her first two matches in Melbourne without dropping a single game and that run looked likely to continue early on, as the Russian raced into a 4-0 lead.

Williams got on the board by holding to 15 in game five, but Sharapova then won eight of the next 10 points to seal the opening set.

The second seed continued to dominate in the second set, serving superbly and winning 16 of 30 receiving points.

Sharapova will meet Kirsten Flipkens in the fourth round, after the Belgian defeated Valeria Savinykh 6-2 4-6 6-3.

Britain's Heather Watson celebrates winning her second round match at the Australian Open tennis championship on January 16, 2013
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