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Ashleigh Barty, Alex de Minaur win at Australian Open but Bernard Tomic out in ...


The results continued an encouraging showing from the local contingent, with a trio of young Australians on debut — Astra Sharma, Zoe Hives and Kimberly Birrell — having kicked off proceedings earlier on day one.


De Minaur had arrived in Melbourne on a high note emotionally in the wake of his breakthrough win, although his Sydney campaign proved physically taxing after he was forced to play his semi-final and final on the same day as a result of inclement weather late in the tournament.


The 19-year-old had given Australian Open organisers a spray because of the scheduling of his match in Melbourne on Monday, claiming they were "punishing" local players like himself and Ashleigh Barty, who went deep in the draw in Sydney.


The 23-year-old Sharma, ranked 232 in the world, came through qualifying last week to earn her spot in the main draw and she took advantage of Ho's struggles in the heat during the third set to advance to the second round.


She more than doubled her prize money courtesy of the win over the wildcard Ho, earning $85,000, and it is just reward after she took a punt on a US college scholarship to Vanderbilt University in Nashville after sustaining a broken ankle early in her career.


But there was mixed news elsewhere for the Australians, with wildcards Jason Kubler, Marc Polmans and Ellen Perez losing in the opening round of the respective men's and women's draws, while James Duckworth fell to Nadal.






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