Melbourne: Top seed Caroline Wozniacki said she felt fully in control as her quest for a maiden grand slam title continued with a 6-2, 6-2 third round victory over Monica Niculescu at the Australian Open on Friday.
The world number one had some trouble killing off the Romanian 31st seed and was broken when she was serving for the match but the hard work had already been done under overcast skies on Hisense Arena.
The 21-year-old wasted no time in breaking back immediately to clinch the victory with a rasping backhand winner after 76 minutes and reach the fourth round without dropping a set.
"I felt pretty good," Wozniacki said. "It was nice weather to play in, overcast, the temperature was nice. I felt like it was up to me what was going to happen out there on court. I was pretty happy.”
"We had a lot of long rallies because she got a lot of balls back. With her slice forehand as well it was tough to finish out the point sometimes.”
"But I don`t know. I felt like I was in control."
Wozniacki needs at least one more win in Melbourne to have a chance of emerging from the year`s first grand slam at the top of the rankings, a position she has held for 67 of the last 68 weeks to constant sniping about her lack of a grand slam title.
Asked for at least the 68th time about the number one ranking, Wozniacki spoke with the fluency of someone who has plenty of practice defending her position.
"I just play. I want to try to do my best here. Whatever happens, happens," she said.
"To be honest, I`ve proven myself for the last two years. I`ve finished number one twice in a row.”
"For me, the most important thing is to keep improving. If I do that, I know I can play on a very high level.”
"If you win matches in tournaments, then the ranking will be there automatically."
The Dane will next play American Christina McHale or 13th seed and former world number one Jelena Jankovic, who she has a losing record against overall but beat three times last year.