Rising Australian tennis star Destanee Aiava has been bounced out of the Brisbane International by fifth seed Svetlana Kuznetsova in straight sets on Wednesday.
The 16-year-old qualifier’s dream run abruptly ended when she was defeated 6-4 6-3 in 70 minutes by the dual grand slam champion in their second round clash.
World No.386 Aiava created history in Brisbane when she became the first player born after the year 2000 to win a WTA main draw match.
She savoured the milestone after upsetting American Bethanie Mattek-Sands in the first round.
But the bubble burst against world No.9 Kuznetsova.
The Russian – making her Brisbane debut – made her intentions clear from the outset by breaking the Australian in the opening game and clinched the first set in 36 minutes.
Kuznetsova booked a likely quarter-final spot with fourth seed and French Open champion Garbine Muguruza of Spain
It will be a learning experience for Aiava – 17 in May – who has already received an Australian Open wildcard.
Meanwhile, second seed Dominika Cibulkova dug deep to avoid a boilover, ousting China’s Zhang Shuai in their second round clash on Wednesday.
World No.5 Cibulkova came back from a set and 2-0 down in the second to defeat Zhang 2-6 6-4 6-4 in just over two hours at Pat Rafter Arena.
Slovakia’s Cibulkova had hoped to pick up where she left off in 2016 after enjoying a first round bye in Brisbane.
The former Australian Open finalist had been still buzzing from the biggest win of her nine year career, downing world No.1 Angelique Kerber to claim the year end WTA Finals crown in Singapore in October.
She won 2016 WTA Comeback Player of the Year after returning from an Achilles injury and a ranking as low as 66th in February.
However, Cibulkova was on the back foot from the outset against world No.23 Zhang.
The former Australian Open quarter-finalist broke in the sixth game and sealed the first set in 45 minutes.
And she jumped to a 2-0 lead in the second set before Cibulkova finally found her range.