Bits and bobs from day 1 at the Australian Open - UBITENNIS
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Bits and bobs from day 1 at the Australian Open



TENNIS AO15 – Standing ovation and round-court Hi-fives for Kokkinakis, on court throw-up in a five-setter for McHale and eight seeded players – including Ivanovic – disappearing from the women’s tournament at round one. From Melbourne Robbie Cappuccio


AO 2015: Interviews, Results, Order of Play, Draws

A great start for the Australian Open with record attendance of 71,171 which sets a new record for day 1.

A lovely sunny day with top of 28C and a little breeze: this is the present Melbourne gives to the public for the opening of the 103rd edition of the Australian Open. And the Aussie crowd gives back with a record attendance (for day 1) of 71,171.

So what happened in the happy slam today?

Lower part of draw playing today, with easy wins for Federer, Nadal, Murray, Berdych and Dimitrov.

But let’s start with my compatriots: four Italians out of five got to the second round. The only one stopping at round one is Karin Knapp, who fiercely fought, but nothing could do against seed n.3 Simona Halep. Easy wins for the remaining two Italians – Errani and Vinci – who dispatched in around one hour Min and Jovanovski respectively.

Simone Bolelli won in four sets over Juan Monaco, starting slowly, but increasing pace from the third set. He will now face Roger Federer in the second round. Seppi – the marathon man – won yet another five setter with Istomin building cobwebs around the opponent and then hitting with drop shots.

Let’s move to my other compatriots (the perks of dual citizenship: you get more chances at winning).

A total of thirteen Aussies played today, of which three former winners of the Junior tournament. Tomic (Junior Australian Open winner of 2008) won in four, whereas Saville (winner of 2012) lost in straight sets.

Sam Groth showed consistency and won in 3 with 24 aces, Matosevic and Duckworth showed gut and heart and both won in five. Millman did not repeat the miracle of the first set against Federer in Brisbane and lost in straight sets, as did Jordan Thompson.

The Special Ks Kokkinakis-Kyrgios, both offered spectacular matches which kept all Australians awake till late. Aussie favourite Nick Kyrgios (Junior winner of 2013) won a five setter with Delbonis, overcoming his back problems which required a medical time out: Aussie Aussie Aussie – Oi Oi Oi !

The most exciting match, however, was by Thanasi Kokkinakis who battled with [11]Gulbis for over four hours, winning the fifth set 8-6 and then running around the court to hi-5 the Aussie fans. You cannot get that at Wimbledon: this is Australia, this is Melbourne, mate.

The women could not replicate the performance, with only Jarka Gajdosova keeping her momentum going and landing a win in straight sets to get through the second round at her 10th attempt (yay!), whereas the other Australians lost: Gavrilova in three set, Sanders in two and Arina Rodionova was bashed by Puig including a bagel in the opening set.

Apart from the Australians, the most represented nations today were France with 12 players, Russia with 10 (but 7 losses) and Czech Republic with 9 (6 through the second round).

The only retirement today was Robredo, after only 5 games against Roger-Vasselin (taking home good $30,000 anyway, for 15 minutes plus warm-up).

The first player to disappear from the Australian open was the young Swiss Belinda Bencic, which collected a total of 3 games only against Julia Goerges. Her Australian Open could be extremely short as the first round of the doubles will be against Hingis-Pennetta.

Eight seeded players are already out of the women’s single tournament:

[5] Ivanovic, who since her Roland Garros victory of 2008 reached the quarter finals only twice (last year in Melbourne and in 2012 at the US Open), lost to Hradecka 6-1 3-6 2-6

[9] Kerber faded in the third set with Begu 4-6 6-0 1-6

[16] Safarova in a dramatic final against Shvedova 4-6 6-2 6-8

[17] Suarez-Navarro dispatched by Carina Witthoeft 1-6 3-6

[23] Pavlyuchenkova 6-4 3-6 3-6 to Wickmayer

[27] Kuznetsova in straight sets with Garcia 4-6 2-6

[28] Lisicki, who is maybe still thinking of the Wimbledon final of 201, lost 6-4 4-6 2-6 to Mladenovic

[32] Bencic who got stood up by her coach, lost 2-6 1-6 to Goerges

A short adventure down under for the two rising Croatian stars: Coric lost in four sets with Chardy after winning the first, and Konjuh (Junior single and double winner of 2013) lost in straight sets to Rybarikova.

At his fifth attempt since 2011, David Goffin finally gets to the second round. Let’s hope this year he will stay injury free.

The most dramatic match was undoubtedly the one Christina McHale won over Stephanie Foretz. The third set lasted 1:51 with Mchale vomiting on court at 4-4 in the final set. After a short break to clean up the mess, the match resumed with McHale eventually winning 12-10.


Rudolf Molleker knocks out two-time champion Leonardo Mayer in Hamburg



German 18-year-old Next Gen player Rudolf Molleker knocked out 2014 and 2017 Hamburg champion Leonardo Mayer 7-6 (8-6) 6-4 after 1 hour and 39 minutes at the Hamburg European Open.


Molleker beat Mayer in 2017 in the Hamburg qualifying round, but Mayer got a spot in the main draw as a lucky loser and went on to win the title.

Molleker fended off all three break points in two consecutive games of the first set, before saving two set points in the tie-break. He sealed the second set with a single break.

The German teenager saved two break points in the seventh game with two service games with two service winners and one more chance in the ninth game to set up a tie-break. Mayer took the lead twice at 6-5 and 8-7, but Molleker saved both chances with two winners and sealed the tie-break on the 18th point after a double fault from Mayer.

Molleker earned an early break at the start of the second set and held his service games in the next games before sealing the win with a service winner at 5-4 to secure his spot in the round of 16.

Marton Fucsovics cruised past Phillip Kohlschreiber 6-3 6-0 dropping just 16 points on serve. Fucsovics got an early break in the fourth game to clinch the opening set 6-3. The Hungarian player broke three times in a one-sided second set and sealed the win with a service winner.

Andrey Rublev, who lost in the second round at Wimbledon and Umag, edged this year’s Munich and Houston champion Christian Garin 6-4 7-6 (7-5) after 1 hour and 39 minutes to score his second win over the Chilean player this year. Rublev broke three times to seal the opening set 6-4. The Russian player got the break back at 4-5 in the second set to set up a tie-break, which he sealed 7-5.

Jeremy Chardy came back from losing the first set to beat Jeremy Chardy 6-7 (4-7) 7-5 6-3 after 2 hours and 34 minutes. Paire fended off a set point at 4-5 in the opening set to clinch the tie-break 7-4. Paire got a late break in the second set, but Chardy won two games at 5-5 to force the match to the third set. Chardy went up a double break to seal the third set 6-3.

Martin Klizan converted all five break points to cruise past Daniel Altmaier 6-2 6-2.

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Alex De Minaur Learning Patience After Two Month Injury Lay-Off

Alex De Minaur is ready to be patient as he looks to build some momentum in Atlanta this week.



Alex De Minaur (@TennisAustralia - Twitter)

Alex De Minaur is learning the art of patience after missing less than two months of action earlier this year. 


The Australian had a rough start to the 2019 as he was forced to fight off a groin injury despite winning the Sydney title in January.

Then he had a couple of months off before once again struggling on his return at Indian Wells where he lost in his opening round.

But these setbacks haven’t stopped the 20 year-old from being patient as he looks to make his mark in the US hard court swing,“I feel like I’m doing all the right things, putting myself out there,” De Minaur told

“If it doesn’t happen this week, next week or the week after, I’m going to keep doing the same things. I’m going to do all the right things, be mentally strong, physically strong and I’m playing good tennis, so I think it’s just a matter of time.”

After Indian Wells, De Minaur spent a few weeks in his home in Alicante, Spain as he looked to regain match sharpness.

It was a period that proved challenging for the talented Aussie as he loves to compete, “I’m not used to being at home for that long and, I mean, us tennis players, we need to go out there and compete, at least me,” De Minaur explained.

I’m a very competitive person, and it was tough for me. I had my outlets. I was playing golf a lot. But still, I needed to get back on court. 

“Obviously seeing people go ahead of you and guys are playing these tournaments and seeing the results they were doing and me not being able to actually even be able to be out there and competing, that was very tough.”

Despite losing five of his seven ATP tour matches since returning properly in Estoril, De Minaur is determined to get back to the level that saw him rise to world number 24.

The Next Gen Star thinks it’s a confidence thing and is not easy to regain after an injury, “[It’s] just confidence. Playing matches, playing the big points right,” he explained.

“It’s something that you take for granted when things are going well. But when you have to stop and try to get back into it, it’s tough. Now I’m just keen to go out there and compete and play some good tennis.”

De Minaur continues his comeback surge this week when he competes in Atlanta, where he will face Bradley Klahn or Marius Copil in his first match.

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Nicolas Jarry Aims To Follow In Family Footsteps After Reaching Bastad Final

Nicolas Jarry looks to join his grandfather in winning an ATP title as he reaches the Bastad final.



Nicolas Jarry (@FOXSport_Chile - Twitter)

Nicolas Jarry will look to follow in his grandfather’s footsteps tomorrow when he takes on Juan Ignacio Londero in the Bastad final. 


The Chilean was in fine form today as he beat another Chilean in Federico Delbonis in the semi-finals today, 6-3 6-2 in 64 minutes.

It is Jarry’s third ATP final and his second of the season following his final in Geneva, where he wasted two championship points to lose to Alexander Zverev.

Should the 23 year-old be triumphant on Sunday, he will join his grandfather as an ATP titlist after Jaime Fillol Sr. won six tour titles and finished a high of number 14 in the rankings in 1974.

Next up for Jarry is Cordoba champion Juan Ignacio Londero, who cruised past 2016 Swedish Open champion Albert Ramos-Vinolas in straight sets.

The 6-3 6-4 victory included the Argentinian winning 73% of his first service points as he dominated the Spaniard in the 1 hour and 21 minute win.

It will be the second final of the season for Londero, who has enjoyed thriving on the clay in 2019 which has helped him reach a career high ranking of 58 in the world in June.

A good sign for Londero, was that en route to winning his lone title in 2019 in Cordoba, he beat Jarry in their only previous ATP World Tour meeting.

Both men will look to cap off an excellent week tomorrow as the final is scheduled for 2pm local time.

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