Gavrilova trumps Bouchard as Australia secure Hopman Cup tie
Australia claimed their opening Hopman Cup Group A tie against Canada thanks to Daria Gavrilova and Thanasi Kokkinakis in Perth on Sunday.
Gavrilova was a class above as she saw off Canadian star Eugenie Bouchard 6-1 6-4 to ignite Australia's campaign before Kokkinakis outlasted Vasek Pospisil 6-4 3-6 6-3.
Australia were unable to secure the sweep, however, losing the mixed-doubles 4-3 (5-3) 4-3 (5-4) in the shortened format on New Year's Eve.
Fan favourite Gavrilova stormed out of the blocks against 2014 Wimbledon finalist and former world number five Bouchard, racing out to a 5-0 lead inside 20 minutes.
World number 25 Gavrilova was pushed in the second set after hitting 10 winners in the opener, but she was still too strong in her first match of the season ahead of the Australian Open.
"I was telling myself 'this is a good test, you're going to have to do this so many times all year,'" said Gavrilova.
"Everyone has goals. Hopefully Ash [Barty], Sam [Stosur] and I will have a little battle. It's good to have those girls around to keep it competitive."
With Australia leading 1-0, Kokkinakis stepped up in his first match since the US Open in August.
"It's amazing to be back. I played as a reserve here when I was 16. Missing my last two Australian Opens with injury has been pretty shattering, but I'm psyched to be back on the Aussie hard courts," said Kokkinakis. "It's unbelievable here, it's been a good start today."
Australia and Canada are back in action on Wednesday, against Belgium and Germany respectively in Group A.