*Five-time champion Serena Williams had zero trouble reaching the third round at Wimbledon, routing Chanelle Scheepers 6-1, 6-1 on Thursday in just 49 minutes.
Chasing her 18th Grand Slam title, the top-seeded American dominated the 94th-ranked South African in the opening match on Court 1 at the All England Club.
Williams served eight aces and had 26 winners. After dealing with back issues earlier this season, Williams says she’s feeling better.
“I felt ok today,” she said. “I just had a goal and trying to do better each day. … You know, I don’t want to feel great necessarily right now because hopefully I have several more matches I can play. But the goal for me is just to feel a little better every day.”
The 30-year-old Scheepers, who had never won a match at Wimbledon until this week, had only five winners to go with 13 unforced errors.
Williams, coming off a second-round loss at the French Open, is playing in her 15th Wimbledon and 56th Grand Slam tournament.
Williams next plays Alize Cornet of France, who beat her earlier this year.
“Cornet, she does everything good,” Williams said when asked about the upcoming match. “That’s why she was able to get a good win off of me. She never gives up, she’s a big fighter. She gets a lot of balls back.
“But I’m ready. It’s time for me to step up my game and do what I know I can do and do what I’m best at.”
Big sister Venus had a rougher time with her second round match against Kurumi Nara of Japan.
The five-time Wimbledon champ had to overcome an error-ridden start to secure a place in the third round with an ultimately comfortable two-set victory: 7-6 (4), 6-1.
With the win, Venus gets past the second round of a major for only the second time in her last 10 Grand Slam tournaments.
“It’s definitely a step in the right direction,” Williams said. “The thing that I just have to really work on is being on tour consistently and playing tournaments.”
Next up for Williams is a third-round clash with 2011 champion Petra Kvitova, the Czech lefthander who downed Mona Barthel of Germany 6-2, 6-0.
“I think we both play similar games, really go for it,” Williams said. “She’s one of the kind of players who can get kind of hot against me.”