Serena thrashes Kvitova at Melbourne Park

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - World number one Serena Williams galloped into the third round of the Australian Open Thursday after she made short work of Petra Kvitova with a 6-2 6-1 victory.

The top seed and defending champion was rarely bothered by the tall left-handed Czech teen-ager and set up a third round clash with the potentially dangerous Carla Suarez Navarro, who beat Williams' older sister Venus at Melbourne Park last year. Kvitova did not have the best buildup for the tournament. She withdrew from the Auckland Classic with tonsillitis and was knocked out in qualifying for Hobart -- a tournament she won in 2009 -- before she beat American Jill Craybas in the first round.

Williams, however, was ruthlessly efficient Thursday winning more than 90 percent of her first service points and breaking Kvitova on four occasions to win the match in 67 minutes when the Czech's angled forehand landed just wide.

(Reporting by Greg Stutchbury; Editing by Patrick Johnston)