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Venus downs Barthel to reach quarter-final at Melbourne Park

Tennis - Australian Open - Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia - 22/1/17 Venus Williams of the U.S. shakes hands after winning her Women's singles fourth round match against Germany's Mona Barthel. REUTERS/Jason Reed
Tennis - Australian Open - Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia - 22/1/17 Venus Williams of the U.S. shakes hands after winning her Women's singles fourth round match against Germany's Mona Barthel. REUTERS/Jason Reed

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Venus Williams continued to turn back the clock with a 6-3 7-5 victory over Germany's Mona Barthel in the fourth round of the Australian Open on Sunday and set up a quarter-final against Russia's Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova.

The 36-year-old Williams raced out to a 3-0 lead but Barthel fought back with the American having trouble with her ball toss at the northern end of the court as she looked directly into the sun.

Barthel broke twice to give her the opportunity at 4-3 to get back on serve but Williams capitalised on the German also having trouble with the sun to break back then served out from the Yarra River end to clinch the first set in 42 minutes.

The second set went on serve until the 11th game when Williams broke for the first time in the set, then, despite serving from the northern end, clinched victory in 96 minutes.

(Writing by Greg Stutchbury in Wellington; Editing by Sudipto Ganguly)

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