British pair crash out of Australian Open

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British tennis pair Heather Watson and Laura Robson both fell at the first hurdle of the Australian Open after a blisteringly hot opening day in Melbourne.

The British duo were both knocked out by higher-ranked opposition as their exits left Great Britain with no women left in the main singles draw, just a few hours into the season's opening Grand Slam.

Robson, who arrived in Melbourne with an injured wrist, lasted only 50 minutes as she lost 6-3 6-0 to the Belgian 18th seed Kirsten Flipkens. 

The Brit, who turns 20 next week, was playing her first full match of the season and her rustiness showed, as she was immediately broken and then lost the first nine points in a row. 

It was an uphill struggle from then on for Robson, who sent down 32 errors to Flipkens' four. Unable to string any sort of consistency together, she lost eight games in a row and got the unwanted award of becoming the first player to exit the tournament. 

"I prefer not to talk about my wrist because then it's just going to become this massive excuse," Robson told BBC Sport soon after

"Really she just played better than me." 

Watson, meanwhile, was unable to build upon the three wins that saw her through qualifying as she was defeated by the 31st seed Daniela Hantuchova. 

Watson, who is ranked 121st in the world after seeing her 2013 form hit through glandular fever, had chances throughout the match against her higher-ranked and vastly more experienced opponent. 

The match was a much closer contest than Robson's as the Guernsey-born player took over two-and-a-half-hours to be beaten. She eventually lost 7-5 3-6 6-3 to the Slovakian, who will play Karolina Pliskova in the next round.

"I felt I was close throughout the match," said Watson.

"I had plenty of chances but didn't take them."  

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Heather Watson
Australian Open
Laura Robson

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