Serena swept away in Auckland

04 January 2017 06:46:09 EST

Serena Williams is hoping windy weather will not prevail when she heads to Melbourne to try and win the Australian Open for the seventh time in her career.

The 35-year-old American suffered in blustery conditions in the second round of the ASB Classic in Auckland, New Zealand, making 88 unforced errors as she was beaten 4-6 7-6 4-6 by compatriot Madison Brengle.

At least the conditions won't be like this in Melbourne.

Serena Williams

And Williams was honest about her performance afterwards, admitting that she is looking forward to more benign weather in the coming weeks.

She told reporters: "I really think I played - I'm trying to think of a word that's not obscene - but that's how I played. Eighty-eight unforced errors is too much, just way too many. I can't expect to win hitting that many errors.

"I never got into my rhythm - I never hit any returns in the vicinity in the court. I've never returned like that in my life.

"It's a little frustrating, especially since I worked so hard in the off-season, but at least the conditions won't be like this in Melbourne."

Williams lost in the final of the Australian Open 12 months ago, being beaten 4-6 6-3 4-6 by Angelique Kerber, who would go on to finish the season as the new world number one.

Serena has added motivation as success in Melbourne in the next few weeks would give her a 23rd career Grand Slam singles title, taking her past the Open Era record she currently shares with Steffi Graf.

Williams is available at 5/2 to win the Australian Open, with defending champion Kerber 10/3 and British number one Johanna Konta 14/1.

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