Daphne Akhurst def. Louis Bickerton, 6-1, 5-7, 6-2
Daphne Akhurst def. Esna Boyd, 7-5, 6-2
Esna Boyd def. Sylvia Harper, 5-7, 6-1, 6-2
Daphne Akhurst def. Esna Boyd, 6-1, 6-3
Daphne Akhurst def. Esna Boyd, 1-6, 8-6, 6-4
Sylvia Lance def. Esna Boyd, 6-3, 3-6, 6-4
Margaret Molesworth def. Esna Boyd, 6-1, 7-5
Margaret Molesworth def. Esna Boyd, 6-3, 10-8
World No. 1 Victoria Azarenka broke through for her first Grand Slam title last year, as she crushed Maria Sharapova in straight sets, 6-3, 6-0.
The third-seeded Azarenka downed Sharapova, seeded fourth at Melbourne Park, to ascend to No. 1 in the world rankings -- dethroning Caroline Wozniacki. The then-22-year-old Belarusian was making her debut in a Grand Slam final and became the youngest champion at Melbourne Park since Sharapova. Azarenka dropped only two sets throughout the entire fortnight en route to her 10th career title.
Sharapova, a runner-up here in 2007 and winner in 2008, is now 4-3 in career Grand Slam finals, as she rebounded later in 2012 to win the French Open.
Sharapova started the match in impressive style, breaking Azarenka's serve and then holding her own to lead 2-0. The advantage was short-lived, as Azarenka captured 12 of the next 13 games, including the final nine for the title.
The win placed Azarenka in rare company as only the third player to have won singles titles in both the junior and women's event at the Australian Open, joining Chris O'Neil and Evonne Goolagong Cawley. She captured the junior crown seven years ago.
After winning the 2010 U.S. Open, the final Grand Slam of that year, Kim Clijsters opened the 2011 season in impressive fashion, capturing her first Australian Open title, defeating Li Na in three sets. Clijsters had reached the Down Under championship final once before, losing to Justine Henin in three sets back in 2004.
Prior to 2011, Clijsters' Aussie Open mark was hardly impressive, as she owned a 31-8 mark and losing in the third round in 2010. The third-seeded Belgian rallied to post a 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 victory over the ninth-seeded Li, who lost for the first time in 12 matches in 2011 and had beaten Clijsters two weeks prior in the Sydney final.
Clijsters lost only one set during the championship, as she won her fourth major title -- the previous three all coming at the U.S. Open (2005, 2009-10) -- in her eighth Grand Slam final.
Serena Williams is the most dominant title-holder Down Under in recent years, winning five of the last eight championships she has entered.
In 2010, Serena knocked off Henin in three sets to become the first back-to-back champion since Jennifer Capriati in 2001-02. In doing so, Serena captured this championship for the fifth time. In addition, Serena and her big sister Venus completed a sweep, as they defended their doubles title.
Back in 2009, Serena cruised past Dinara Safina, 6-0, 6-3, for her 10th of 15 career major singles championships. The win, one of the most lopsided in Australian Open history, took only 59 minutes and occurred just a day after she and Venus took home the women's doubles title.
After winning Wimbledon and the U.S. Open last year, Serena is seeking her third straight Grand Slam title. If she meets Azarenka in the semifinals, as Azarenka is the top seed and Serena third, she boasts an 11-1 career mark against her, including wins in their last nine meetings.
Margaret Court was an 11-time winner of this event. Court won a total of 22 times at the Australian Open (11 singles, 8 doubles, 3 mixed titles). The draw consists of 128 players (108 Direct, 12 Qualifiers and up to eight wildcards). Chris O'Neil and Serena are the only players in women's Australian Open history to win this event as non-seeds.
Australian women have won this event 43 times, followed by the United States (22), Germany (4), Great Britain, Switzerland and Yugoslavia (3), the Czech Republic, Belgium and France (2), and Belarus and Russia (1). Australian Open women's singles champions are awarded the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Trophy, named after Akhurst -- a five-time winner of the event in the 1920s. Aged 16 years and three months (in 1997), Martina Hingis became the Australian Open's youngest female singles champion when she won the title.