Melbourne | Norrie notches up first win

There were concerns about Cameron Norries’s fitness prior to the Australian Open but these were quickly dispelled during his opening match in Melbourne.

I think I did the basics well today, especially managing my service games well and I think that was the difference in the match Cameron Norrie

The British No1 picked up a wrist injury when playing at the ASB Classic in Auckland, and, as a precautionary measure, pulled out of the event prior before his quarter final.

Seeded 19 in Melbourne, he posted a comfortable 6-4 6-4 6-2 win over Peruvian qualifier, Juan Pablo Varillas to set up a second round encounter with 22-year-old Italian Giulio Zeppieri who overcame the Serbian Dusan Lajovic 6-3 3-6 6-3 7-6(3).

There were little signs of any discomfort in a composed performance from the Briton who after establishing himself in the opening set, stormed off in the second and third.

Understandably, he started in a slightly tentative manner but after saving break points on his opening service game, he made the crucial breakthrough in the fifth game.

The second and third sets were far more comfortable affairs as the 19th seed emerged from being cautious to pressing the Varillas serve.

An early double-break in the second put him in control despite a brief Varillas rally as the Brit looked to serve it out, breaking the Peruvian in the third and seventh games to put him through on his third match point.

After the match Norrie admitted he was concerned with so little time to recover but there were no causes for alarm as he became the first British winner of the fortnight.

“I was lucky enough to be able to manage the practice and give myself the best chance to be ready to compete and was able to still do a lot of movement and a lot of fitness before, so it was good,” Norrie said.

“I think I did the basics well today, especially managing my service games well and I think that was the difference in the match.

“It was not easy to play at all. It was really quick conditions, and the court was moving around quite a lot with the wind.

“But I’m happy to be through.

“I didn’t think I served that well, but I didn’t lose many points on my first serve, which was good to see.”

Re his build up for the first grand slam of the season, he added:

“It was not ideal but I was lucky enough to play on Tuesday, so I had a few more days to get ready.

“I was lucky enough to be able to manage the practice and give myself the best chance to be ready to compete and was able to still do a lot of movement and a lot of fitness before, so it was good.”


Juan Pablo Varillas was outplayed by the Brit

(Photo by Morgan Hancock/Getty Images)




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