Alex De Minaur the Lone Aussie Remaining as Week Two Comes Around

Julian Miller
By:
Julian Miller
20/01/2024
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Alex De Minaur now the Only Aussie Left of the 21 Main Draw Qualifiers

Of a field that began with 21 Australians, Alex De Minaur is now the only one remaining in play at the Australian Open.  

News Insights

  • De Minaur cruising with tough task ahead.
  • Max Purcell loses second round heartbreaker.
  • Tomljanovic drops tough three-setter.
  • Kokkinakis unable to make magical run.

The Australian Open has not proved to offer the type of home court advantage that many were hoping for as heading into week two, just one of the 21 Aussies in the main draw remain. As expected, that person is Alex De Minaur who has been absolutely superb thus far.  

De Minaur Faces Toughest Task Ahead 

Alex De Minaur was always Australia’s best chance at a local making a deep run at this year’s Australian Open and has cruised through his opponents thus far.  
 
He has dropped only one set through his first three matches and has broken his opponents serve once or more in all but one set.  
 
After Milos Raonic was forced to retire in the third set of their opening round matchup, De Minaur has played a pair of Italians and handled them with ease.  
 
Matteo Arnaldi was his first victim as it took the Aussie two hours on the dot to dispatch of him 6-3, 6-0, 6-3. Flavio Cobolli didn’t fare much better as De Minaur sent him packing with a 6-3, 6-3, 6-1 victory in round three.  
 
His fourth round matchup however is a significant step up in competition from his previous foes. He will face world no.5 Andrey Rublev with a spot in the quarterfinals and De Minaur’s best result at the Australian Open on the line.  
 
After surviving a scary opening round match in which he won a 10-6 tiebreaker in the fifth set, Rublev has found his groove and taken down his past two opponents in three sets each.  
 
De Minaur and Rublev have met five times on the ATP Tour with De Minaur holding a 3-2 edge. However, Rublev won their most recent meeting at the 2023 Paris Masters.  
 
The match will certainly be tight but given De Minaur’s form and the way the crowd will have his back it would be tough to bet against the Aussie.  

Purcell Falls in Second Round Heartbreaker 

After winning his first round match in four sets, Max Purcell had a difficult matchup against world no.11 Casper Ruud in round two.  
 
As a significant underdog, Purcell put on quite a show for the fans. He took the second set in a tiebreaker and the fourth 6-3, forcing a fifth and deciding set.  
 
There was close to nothing separating the two in this final set as once again the pair went to a tiebreak. This time however, it was Ruud who came out on top taking the tiebreaker 10-7 and ousting Purcell from the competition.  

Tomljanovic Narrowly Edged Out 

Ajla Tomljanovic’s tournament in many ways was similar to that of Purcell’s. She progressed through the first round to set up a date with women’s world no.11 Jelena Ostapenko in round two.  
 
Tomljanovic looked flustered in the opening set as she fell easily 6-0. She showed her mental toughness however and bounced back in set two, winning it 6-3.  
 
The third set saw Ostapenko break Tomljanovic twice early while Tomljanovic got one break back, she was unable to find another as she ultimately fell 6-4 and bowed out.  

Other Results from Australians 

James McCabe, Olivia Gadecki, and Kimberly Birrell were all unable to advance past round one of their home slams earlier in the week.  
 
Crowd favourite Thanasi Kokkinakis on the other hand was able to take his opening round match before falling to the red-hot Grigor Dimitrov in round two.  
 
Chris O’Connell, Jordan Thompson, and Alexei Popyrin were all able to take a set in their second round matches but eventually fell to some of the world’s best in Ben Shelton, Stefanos Tsitsipas, and Novak Djokovic.  
 
Storm Hunter got through her second round match but was narrowly defeated in three sets in round three . 

The Australian Open always offers a chance for more Aussies than usual to take part in the main draw of a Grand Slam. With all but one now being eliminated, the countries eyes turn to Alex De Minaur as their only hope at a homegrown champion.