Melbourne | Brits Boulter, Burrage and Miyazaki make round 2 of AO qualifying, as Noskova falls 

Britain’s Katie Boulter, Lily Miyazaki and Jodie Burrage moved a step closer to securing a spot at the Australian Open as they each won their first-round qualifying matches.

It's tough to come off a tournament win and start all over again, so I'm really proud of myself getting through that today. [Canberra] was a really strong tournament and to go in there, and have no expectations, and end up winning the tournament, I'm pretty happy to do that, but I'm not finished there, I'm just starting. Katie Boulter

Boulter said that her ITF tournament triumph in winning the W60 title in Canberra last week had come out of the blue when she defeated Burrage in the final at the weekend.

It required some adjustment to reset in time for her opening qualifying match at Melbourne Park, which she narrowly eked out 6-2 3-6 7-6[10-5] against Caroline Dolehide from the USA.

“I knew it was going to be tough going into it,” Boulter told “I’ve played a lot of matches this year and they’re physical but, you know, I’m in a good place.

“It’s just keeping my head straight and working really hard.

“It’s tough to come off a tournament win and start all over again, so I’m really proud of myself getting through that today.

“[Canberra] was a really strong tournament and to go in there, and have no expectations, and end up winning the tournament, I’m pretty happy to do that, but I’m not finished there, I’m just starting.

Boulter, the World No 124 who is seeded 30 in the qualifying at Melbourne Park, came through her opening match after 2 hours and 10 minutes, and next faces 19-year-old Polina Kudermetova in round 2.

The British No 3 dug in to hold serve midway through the deciding set, and wrapped up the match by winning 5 straight points in the 10-point tie-break.

Jodie Burrage was the finalist in Canberra and also transitioned to Melbourne to beat wild-card Elysia Bolton in straight sets

© Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

Miyazaki needed just an hour 28 minutes to beat another American, Hailey Baptiste, 6-4 7-5, the British No 7 being the more clinical in converting 4 of 6 break points in contrast to her opponent’s 2 from 7.

Burrage, the 26th seed, eased past Australian wild-card Elysia Bolton, 6-2 6-4, despite struggling with her first serve, with just 47 per cent of them landing in across the two sets.

Miyazaki will face Jang Su-jeong in the next round of qualifying on Wednesday, after the Korean took out 7th-seeded Sara Errani from Italy, 7-6(5) 6-4, while Burrage meets Czech Barbora Palicova later on the same day, who beat Frenchwoman Chloe Paquet, 6-4 7-6(3).

Katie Swan, the British No 5, however, joined Heather Watson and Sonay Kartal in falling at the first hurdle, losing to Jessika Ponchet from France, 6-4 6-3.

18-year old Adelaide International 1 finalist Linda Noskova was upset in 3 sets by Katherine Sebov in the 1st-round on Tuesday despite being the highest ranking riser this week

© Sarah Reed/Getty Images

There was a shock in qualifying as Adelaide International 1 finalist Linda Noskova was beaten by Katherine Sebov from Canada, 6-4 3-6 6-4.

The 18-year Czech jumped 46 spots in the latest rankings after her run to No 56 and is the second youngest in the Top 100 behind fellow country woman Linda Fruhvirtova.

She still had to qualify as the direct entries are based on the WTA Ranking list of 5 December.

Noskova beat former World No 1 Victoria Azarenka and top seed Ons Jabeur on her way to the final in Adelaide last week, but the No 2 seed did not show the same level in Melbourne against the World No 195 from Canada.

Meanwhile, 15-year-old Brenda Fruhvirtova, the younger of the two sisters, won her Grand Slam qualifying debut by beating Natalija Stevanovic, 6-0 7-6(0).

Ranked No 135 in the world and seeded 27 in Melbourne, the young Czech needed one hour and 51 minutes to come through to meet Daria Snigur, ranked 148, after the Ukrainian defeated Fernanda Contreras Gomez from Spain, 6-3 6-7(6) 6-4.

The 15-year-old went on a tear on the ITF circuit last year, winning 27 matches in a row, which included 5 titles on the trot, and ended the season with 8 ITF titles.

Brenda’s 17-year-old sister Linda Fruhvirtova is also making her debut at the Australian Open, and is directly into the main draw thanks to her world ranking of No 80.

Mirjam Bjorklund and Denis Shapovalov have dated since 2019 and the Canadian is coaching her at AO qualifying where the Swede won her opening match against Ekaterina Reyngold


Elsewhere, Denis Shapovalov is coaching girlfriend Mirjam Bjorklund from Sweden, and saw her advance to round 2 with a 7-5 6-1 win over Ekaterina Reyngold from Russia.

The World No 151 won the opening set after breaking her opponent in the final game, and dominated the second by breaking Reyngold twice to book her spot against Japan’s Nao Hibino, who beat Louisa Chirico 7-6(3) 2-6 7-6(5).

Bjorklund won 32 out of 42 points on her first serve, while claiming 12 out of 20 on her second serve, and struck 19 winners while making 21 unforced errors.

It was a good performance from the 24-year-old, who is now one step closer to a maiden main draw appearance at the Australian Open.

Shapovalov was present on the sidelines, not only cheering for his girlfriend but also coaching her from time to time.

The couple started dating in June 2019, and are often seen cheering for each other court-side during matches.

Three Australians, Priscilla Hon, Astra Sharma and Ellen Perez, opened with wins, while top seed Alycia Parks from the USA, who has already outlined her goal to end the season in the Top 10, took her first step by scraping through against Australian wild-card Alexandra Bozovic, 7-6(4) 7-6(2).



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