21 Aussies Set for Action at the Australian Open

Adam Weinberg
By:
Adam Weinberg
13/01/2024
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Outlook for the 21 Aussies Participating in the Australian Open

Australia will be well represented at its home grand slam with 21 participants across the men’s and women’s singles draws.

News Insights

  • Can De Minaur continue his prime form?
  • Will we see another Aussie man make a run?
  • Tomljanovic looks to make noise in her return.
  • Can any of the four Aussie women wildcards pull off an upset.

The 2024 Australian Open is set to kick off Grand Slam season today and the local fans will have lots to cheer about. The men’s and women’s singles draws see 21 Australians ready to compete in Melbourne while one man in particular has his mind set on a deep run.  

De Minaur Comes in on a Roll 

Alex De Minaur is the highest ranked Australian in the draw currently at tenth in the world. As Such, he is certainly Australia’s best shot at a homegrown champion. However, it’s not just his ranking that makes this true.  
 
De Minaur is in the midst of the best stretch of his career. Over the past two weeks while competing in the United Cup on Australian soil, De Minaur was able to defeat Taylor Fritz, Novak Djokovic, and Alex Zverev in succession.  
 
That is three men who were all at the time in the ATP top ten with Djokovic of course being world number one.  
 
This recent success in Australia should come as a joy to Australian fans as to this point, De Minaur’s best Australian Open result is a fourth-round loss.  
 
If the draw held up, he would face a difficult match against Andrey Rublev in the fourth round of this year’s tournament.  
 
Ranked fifth in the world, Rublev would represent a tough task but given De Minaur’s recent form, there should be no doubts that he can take on any challenger on his day.  

Prospects for the other Aussie Men 

Along with De Minaur, Australia has 14 other men in the main draw. Of those men, Alexei Popyrin has the highest world ranking.  
 
Popyrin will face Aussie wildcard Marc Polmans in the opening round and should he be victorious will likely have to battle Novak Djokovic in round two, meaning a deep run seems unlikely.  
 
Max Purcell sits just behind Popyrin in the world rankings and will be heavily favoured in his first-round matchup with qualifier Mate Valkusz. Should he win this match Casper Ruud would likely be his opponent in round two.  
 
Countrymen Jordan Thompson and Aleksandar Vukic are matched up against one another in the opening round with the winner likely to face Stefanos Tsitsipas in round two.  
 
Fan favourite Thanasi Kokkinakis is in his eight Aussie Open main draw and has a difficult yet winnable matchup with Sebastian Ofner. With the crowd at his back Kokkinakis could certainly make a run.  
 
Chris O’Connell will likely be favoured against Christian Garin while Rinky Hijikata will have to play his best against 24th ranked Jan-Lennard Struff.  
 
Wildcard’s James Duckworth, Jason Kubler, Adam Walton and James McCabe all have winnable but difficult first round matchups.  
 
Qualifiers Omar Jasika and Dane Sweeny will be in tough against Hubert Hurkacz and Francisco Cerundolo respectively.  

Tomljanovic Looks to go on a Run 

Ajla Tomljanovic is back at the Australian Open after missing last year’s tournament due to injury. She has never progressed past the second round in Melbourne but will look to change that this year.  
 
She faces Petra Martic in round one and if she comes out on top will be in tough in round two against Jelena Ostapenko.  
 
Tomljanovic is Australia’s only woman in the field that is not a wild card or qualifier and as such is the country’s best hope at a deep run on the womens side.  
 
Wildcard Berths Lead to Upset Potential for Aussie Women 
 
Daria Saville, Kimberly Birrell, Olivia Gadecki, and Taylah Preston all gained wild card berths and will be looking for upsets in their opening round matches.  
 
Storm Hunter is the lone female qualifier but faces world no.101 Sara Errani in what is a winnable match. 

Grand Slam season is upon us and as always, the first stop is Melbourne for the Australian Open. With 21 Australian athletes set to participate, there will be lots for Aussie fans to cheer about. Some are expected to have success while most are looking to complete upsets and go on unprecedented runs.