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January 16, 2019 5:14 AM Australia's Barty shines brightly as compatriots stumble

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Australia’s top-ranked player Ashleigh Barty beat Wang Yafan 6-2 6-3 in a straight-forward affair on Wednesday, propelling the home country’s leading prospect into the third round. The 15th-seeded Barty is the highest ranked local player — either man or woman — in the tournament and is known for her court craft and is an accomplished 2137

January 14, 2019 12:28 PM Australian Open: Retiring Andy Murray out in opening round

Britain's Andy Murray waves as he leaves the court following his first round loss to Spain's Roberto Bautista Agut at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Monday, Jan. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein) Andy Murray nearly pulled off quite a comeback before losing 6-4, 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-7 (4), 6-2 to 22nd-seeded Roberto 146

January 13, 2019 10:36 PM Australian premier plans Fiji, Vanuatu visit to offset China influence

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday he will visit Fiji and Vanuatu this week as part of a push to offset China’s growing influence in the South Pacific. Morrison heads to Vanuatu on Wednesday, in the first visit by an Australian prime minister to the Pacific island nation in three decades. He then will go to Fiji, returning 102

January 13, 2019 6:36 PM Meghan Markle's bodyguard quits after six months working for pregnant Duchess of Sussex

Meghan Markle has lost yet another royal staffer since becoming the Duchess of Sussex. The former "Suits" star's bodyguard, an officer employed by the Scotland Yard police, called it quits after just six months on the job, reports say. "Unlike someone who has grown up in the royal family and has been used to having close protection from an early age, it can be constraining 114

January 13, 2019 5:28 AM Australia to force local governments to induct citizens on national holiday

SYDNEY (Reuters) - Australia’s federal government has ordered local governments to hold naturalization ceremonies for new citizens on Australia Day amid controversy over the holiday, which some claim is offensive to its indigenous people. The government is proposing that all local government bodies in Australia, typically referred to as councils, must hold induction 109

January 13, 2019 3:47 AM Experts picks: Novak Djokovic a unanimous choice, Serena Williams a slight favorite

MELBOURNE, Australia -- As the players took their turn addressing the media over the past few days at Melbourne Park, one common theme came to light: They're ready. They're pumped. They're feeling good. Bring on the Aussie Open! OK, perhaps the news of Andy Murray was a bit of a downer, but even he was out at Rod Laver Arena on Saturday cracking some groundstrokes 101

January 12, 2019 3:27 PM Rahaf al-Qunun: Saudi teen refugee arrives in Canada

A Saudi teenager who fled her family alleging abuse and got stranded at a Bangkok airport has arrived in Canada after being granted asylum there. Rahaf Mohammed al-Qunun, 18, had been trying to reach Australia via Bangkok but was initially told to return to Kuwait, where her family were waiting. She refused to fly back and barricaded herself into her airport 114

January 11, 2019 12:54 AM Andy Murray announces he plans to retire from tennis in near future

Andy Murray said Friday he plans to retire and is targeting this year's Wimbledon as the final tournament of his career -- if he can keep playing that long. "Obviously I've been struggling for a long time. I've been in a lot of pain for about 20 months now," Murray said at Melbourne Park ahead of the Australian Open. "I've pretty much done everything 115

January 9, 2019 7:03 PM WTA roundup: Barty upsets No. 1 Halep in Sydney

Australia’s Ashleigh Barty stunned world No. 1 Simona Halep in straight sets in the second round of the Sydney International on Wednesday. Barty converted four of her seven break chances and struck 26 winners in the 6-4, 6-4 victory, compared to just nine winners by the top-seeded Romanian. It wasn’t the day’s only upset. Qualifier Yulia Putintseva of Kazakhstan 91

January 9, 2019 2:48 PM Freak freeway sign fall seen in shocking video nearly dooms driver in Australia

A shocking video has emerged showing the moment a highway sign fell on an SUV in Australia. (iStock) An Australian woman narrowly avoided death when a freeway sign tumbled onto her SUV Tuesday -- a freak incident captured on video by another driver. The woman was driving on the Tullamarine freeway in Melbourne when the large metal sign came crashing 291