Australian Open: Qualifying – Round 1 – Highest ranked Aussie Inglis to face Bouchard in second round

PLAYERS desperate to earn one of 16 spots in the main draw of the Australian Open kicked off their campaign yesterday with the first half of the Round 1 qualifying matches taking place. With poor air quality around the entire state including Melbourne Park, it made it tough for players who fought through for the most part despite a number of retirements or forced breaks.

In the men’s draw, 10 of the 16 seeds advanced through to the second round, with the biggest upset coming from Australian, Aleksandar Vukic. The 273rd ranked 23-year old from Sydney knocked off 11th seed and 113th ranked Italian, Thomas Fabbiano. Arguably more remarkably, 512th ranked Blake Mott shined on his home court, running out a straights sets winner over 27th seed and former top 100 player, Portugal’s Pedro Sousa. Other Australians who won included Max Purcell and Luke Saville, while it was the end of the road for former top 20 player Bernard Tomic, bowing out in straight sets to seventh seed, United States’ Denis Kudla. Jason Kubler and Matt Ebden also departed the first round of qualifying, along with wildcards, Harry Bourchier and Tristan Schoolkate who went down to seeded opponents.

Also out of the running for an Australian Open spot were the likes of Israel’s Dudi Sela, Slovakia’s Martin Klizan and Slovenia’s Blaz Rola, with the latter copping Ukraine’s Sergiy Stakhovsky in the first round, a 34-year old veteran who reached as high as 31st in the world rankings back in 2010. Names to keep an eye on as they run to the main draw include Italian Pablo Lorenzi (career high 34th), with the 12th seed almost unfairly playing unseeded Lukas Rosol (career high 26) with both more than capable of causing headaches for opponents despite now being 38 and 34 years of age respectively. Latvia’s Ernests Gulbis might be sitting at a lowly 254th in the world rankings, but who could forget when he reached the top 10 back in 2014, on the back of a couple of titles in France. He has not won a title since, but is far too good to be playing through qualifying.

In today’s matches, number one seed Austrian Dennis Novak starts his road to the main draw against consistent German, Dustin Brown, while Switzerland’s Henri Laaksonen – seeded second – will take on Australian talent Rinky Hijkata. In the value basket of players more than worthy of an automatic main draw spot but for one reason or another find themslves low down the order are Serbia’s Viktor Troicki, Belgium’s Steve Darcis and Kimmer Coppejans, France’s Nicolas Mahut and ninth seed, Japan’s Go Soeda. Akira Santillan will lead the Australian charge on Day 2, taking on France’s Quentin Halys, with just he and Hijkata left to play their first round matches.

Men’s Day 1 Results:

[7] D. Kudla (USA) defeated B. Tomic (AUS) 7-6 6-3
[10] N. Gombos (SVK) defeated J. Ficovich (ARG) 6-4 6-1
[WC] A. Vukic (AUS) defeated [11] T. Fabbiano (ITA) 7-6 6-4
[12] P. Lorenzi (ITA) defeated A. Menendez-Maceiras (ESP) 6-3 6-3
[13] G. Mager (ITA) defeated M. Ebden (AUS) 7-5 6-4
M. Janvier (FRA) defeated [14] A. Hoang (FRA) 7-6 6-7 6-1
[15] F. Coria (ARG) defeated R. Ramanathan 4-6 6-4 6-1
[16] P. Gojowczyk (GER) defeated T. Seyboth Wild (BRA) 6-4 6-2
[17] P. Gunneswaran (IND) defeated [WC] H. Bourchier (AUS) 6-2 6-4
[19] J. Jung (TAI) defeated D. Young (USA) 6-4 6-7 6-1
[26] K. Kovalik (SVK) defeated T. Kamke (GER) 6-1 7-6
[WC] B. Mott (AUS) defeated [27] P. Sousa (POR) 6-3 6-4
Z. Li (CHN) defeated [28] D. Sela (ISR) 7-6 5-3 RET
[29] J. Varillas (PER) defeated [WC] T. Schoolkate (AUS) 2-6 7-5 7-5
P. Krstin (SRB) defeated [30] M. Klizan (SVK) 6-3 6-2
S. Stakhovsky (UKR) defeated [31] B. Rola (SLO) 7-6 6-4
I. Ivashka (BLR) defeated L. Broady (GBR) 6-3 6-0
J. Domingues (POR) defeated M. Moraing (GER) 7-6 6-3
M. Purcell (AUS) defeated A. Collarini (ARG) 7-6 6-7 6-4
R. Marcora (ITA) defeated L. Lacko (SVK) 6-3 6-2
F. Ferreira Silva (POR) defeated J. Nam (KR) 2-6 6-4 6-4
M. Bachinger (GER) defeated [WC] J. Kubler (AUS) 7-5 7-5
D. Galan (COL) defeated F. Baldi (ITA) 6-1 6-2
L. Rosol (CZE) defeated T. Lamasine (FRA) 6-4 6-3
P. Martinez (ESP) defeated J. Lenz (GER) 6-0 6-1
[WC] L. Saville (AUS) defeated M. Torpegaard (AUT) 6-3 6-3
M. Viola (ITA) defeated N. Kuhn (ESP) 4-6 6-3 3-1 RET
A. Tabilo (CHI) defeated B. Zapata Miralles (ESP) 7-6 2-6 6-3
E. Gulbis (LAT) defeated M. Cressy (USA) 6-3 6-3
Y. Hanfmann (GER) defeated C. Taberner (ESP) 7-6 6-1
B. Kavcic (SLO) defeated J. Clarke (GBR) 7-6 3-6 6-2
C. Lestienne (FRA) defeated B. Van de Zandschulp (NED) 6-3 1-6 7-5

Looking at the women’s first round of qualifying, 14 of the 16 seeds made it through unscathed, with only Germany’s Antonia Lottner smashing 17th seed, Katarzyna Kawa from Poland 6-2 6-1, while United States’ Whitney Osuigwe – seeded 26th – went down to Italian, Martina Di Giuseppe, 3-6 6-4 6-1. Russian 12th seed, Liudmila Samsonova had the easiest match of the day, breezing through with a 6-1 6-0 rout of China’s Lu Jia-Jing. Elsewhere, number one seed, Ana Bogdan moved through to the next round after downing Australian wildcard, Ivana Popovic, while Switzerland’s Stefanie Voegele and Romania’s Monica Niculescu – both former top 50 players – are on track to face off in the third round for a spot in the main draw.

From the Australian point of view, 21st seed Maddison Inglis made it through in an absolute epic contest, winning 6-3 0-6 7-6 with the final tiebreaker going to 19-17 before she could move through against Slovakian Rebecca Sramkova. Now Inglis faces a huge task in former world number five Canada’s Eugenie Bouchard – now ranked 211th in the world. Belinda Woolcock takes on Bogdan in an equally tough match after downing countrywoman and fellow wildcard, Olivia Tjandramulia easily, 6-0 6-3. A couple of Australians were also bundled out with Abbie Myers and Ellen Perez both out after tough first round draws.

Bouchard is clearly the standout player to watch given her fall from the heights that saw her an established top 10 player despite only winning one title. Along with Bogdan, Voegele and Niculescu, there is plenty of talent capable of upsetting a top 100 player in the main draw, while Nicole Gibbs is also a confident player after her run at Limoges last month, making it through to the next round.

Second seed Japan’s Nao Hibino begins her campaign today, with a number of enthralling contests. From a home court point of view, Storm Sanders will lead the Australian charge, taking on American Robin Anderson, while Kaylah McPhee has the toughest draw against 13th seed Belgian Greet Minnen. Jaimee Fourlis is the other Australian out on court today, taking on China’s Xun Fang Ying. Some matches to watch include Italian Sara Errani taking on fifth seed Russian, Anna Kalinskaya who it is fair to say would be shaking her head at copping a former top five player in the first round of qualifying. Poland’s Urszula Radwanska (career high 29th) and Sweden’s Johanna Larsson (20th) battling it out on Court 10 is a must-watch for a first round of qualifying.

Women’s Day 1 Results:

[1] A. Bogdan (ROU) defeated [WC] I. Popovic (AUS) 7-6 6-4
[8] A. Bolsova (ESP) defeated P. Ozgen (TUR) 6-2 6-3
[9] Y. Bonaventure (BEL) defeated [WC] D. Parry (FRA) 6-2 7-5
[11] S. Voegele (SUI) defeated D. Jakupovic (SLO) 4-6 6-5 RET
[12] L. Samsonova (RUS) defeated J. Lu (CHN) 6-1 6-0
[14] F. Di Lorenzo (USA) defeated J. Grabher (AUT) 6-3 6-2
[15] N. Gibbs (USA) defeated C. Bucsa (ESP) 6-0 2-6 7-5
[16] V. Flink (CZE) defeated O. Dodin (FRA) 7-6 6-3
A. Lottner (GER) defeated [17] K. Kawa (POL) 6-2 6-1
[20] M. Niculescu (ROU) defeated A. Kalinina (UKR) 7-6 6-2
[21] M. Inglis (AUS) defeated R. Sramkova (SVK) 6-3 0-6 7-6
[23] T. Martincova (CZE) defeated A. Krunic (SRB) 6-1 6-1
[24] X. Wang (CHN) defeated R. Hogenkamp (NED) 6-3 6-2
M. Di Giuseppe (ITA) defeated [26] W. Osuigwe (USA) 3-6 6-4 6-1
[30] C. Dolehide (USA) defeated M. Bolvadze (GEO) 6-3 6-2
[31] A. Li (USA) defeated M. Sherif (IRQ) 6-3 7-5
[WC] B. Woolcock (AUS) defeated [WC] O. Tjandramulia (AUS) 6-0 6-3
Y. Wickmayer (BEL) [WC] E. Perez (AUS) 7-6 6-1
S. Rogers (USA) defeated M. Barthel (GER) 6-4 6-0
O. Govortsova (BLR) defeated [WC] A. Myers (AUS) 7-5 7-5
M. Trevisan (ITA) defeated J. Cristian (ROU) 6-2 6-2
E. Bouchard (CAN) defeated X. You (CHN) 4-6 7-6 6-1
D. Satralova (CZE) defeated X. Han (CHN) 6-2 6-1
V. Tomova (BUL) defeated A. Raina (IND) 6-2 7-6
H. Baptiste (USA) defeated K. Okamura (JPN) 6-1 6-4
M. Osorio Serano (COL) defeated N. Kostic (SRB) 2-6 6-1 6-1
E. Cocciaretto (ITA) defeated B. Schoofs (NED) 6-7 7-5 6-3
V. Savinykh (RUS) defeated N. Bains (GBR) 6-2 6-2
H. Dart (GBR) defeated E. Kostova (BLR) 6-4 6-1
G. Gatto-Monticone (ITA) defeated F. Liu (CHN) 6-2 6-0
D. Aiava (AUS) defeated K. Rakhimova (RUS) 6-4 6-2
C. Muramatsu (JPN) defeated M. Melnikova (RUS) 6-1 5-7 6-4

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments