Also on the field the last two Italians involved in this first round: Seppi and Musetti. The organizers return to the Djokovic case: “We apologize for the impact it has had on the players”
On the second day of the Australian Open, Jannik Sinner respects the predictions, beating the Portuguese Joao Sousa in three sets (6-4 7-5 6-1) and passes to the second round. Nothing to do for the other Italians who took the field Gianluca Mager, Stefano Travaglia, Marco Cecchinato and Andreas Seppi. The 26-year-old from Sanremo n.65 Atp did not make it against the 24 year old Russian Andrey Rublev, n.6 in the world and 5th seeded in the first slam of the year: he ends 6-3 6-2 6-2. The 30-year-old from Ascoli 98 Atp gave up after four sets to the 33-year-old Spaniard Roberto Bautista, 18 in the world and 15th in the Australian seeding: 7-6 (7-2) 6-4 5-7 6-1 the final score . The 30-year-old from Palermo n.95 Atp finally lost 6-4 7-5 7-6 (7-0) against 38-year-old German Philipp Kohlschreiber (n.134). Seppi was also eliminated with a clear 3-0 (6-1 6-1 7-5) inflicted on him by the Polish KamilMajchrzak, who is on his third appearance in Melbourne and had never passed a round. For Seppi, however, this was the 66th consecutive presence in a Grand Slam (67th overall). The blue hopes remain hanging on Lorenzo Musetti who is 2-1 down against the host Alex De Minaur, after having badly conceded the third set with a dry 6-0.
No surprise at the debut for Daniil Medvedev. The world number 2, a great favorite given the absence of Novak Djokovic, defeated the Swiss Henri Laaksonen 6-1, 6-4, 7-6 (3). In the next round, Nick Kyrgios or the British Liam Broady awaits him. Five years after his last Australian Grand Slam victory, Andy Murray made it through the first round by beating Nikoloz Basilashvili 6-1, 3-6, 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-4. At 35, after a week in isolation due to Covid, Richard Gasquet wins the French derby against Ugo Humbert for 3-6, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (3), 6-3. Diego Schwartzman’s debut was also easy, seeded number 13, who overtook Filip Krajinovic 6-3, 6-4, 7-5. Casper Ruud retired instead before taking the field against Alex Molcan, stopped by an ankle injury.
Among the women a positive debut for Garbine Muguruza. The Spanish # 3 in the world beat the French Clara Burel, # 77 by 6-3, 6-4 in an hour and 28 minutes. Routine day for the majority of the favorites: Anett Kontaveit, n.6, finished 6-2, 6-3 with the Czech Siniakova; Iga Swiatek, n.7, 6-3, 6-0 with the English Dart, while Simona Halep, n.14, ruled 6-4, 6-3 the Polish Frech. Two surprises: the defeat of Petra Kvitova, n.21 in the world, beaten by the Romanian Cirstea, n.38, with a clear 6-2, 6-2. Also out was 19-year-old Leylah Fernandez, n.24 in the world, finalist at the US Open, at the hands of the Australian wild card Maddison Inglis, n.139.
Meanwhile, the echo of the Djokovic affair has not yet died out. “As an Australian tennis family, we recognize that recent events have been a significant distraction for all and we deeply regret the impact this has had on all players.” The organizers of the Australian Open wrote in a statement immediately after the start of the tournament. In the note they clarify that there is no opposition with the government: “We respect the decision of the Minister of Immigration and the Federal Court”, underlining that “Tennis Australia has worked closely with the federal government and with the State of Victoria in the ‘last year to offer a safe Australian Open for players, staff and fans with regards to Covid ». And again: “Participating in an important international sporting event during a global pandemic that continues to evolve and challenge us all, is deeply demanding for all parties involved”, before ensuring that the tournament will be held in maximum anti-Covid safety.
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