MELBOURNE, January 18, 2018
For the first time in a decade, Stan Wawrinka will not feature in the third round at the Australian Open after his comeback from knee surgery ends with a 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 loss to US-American Tennys Sandgren.
Sandgren, currently ranked World No. 97, sent down 11 aces, winning 81 per cent of his first service points to reach the third round at a Grand Slam for the first time in one hour and 28 minutes.
“I was really happy just to get my first Grand Slam win, so now I’ve got a second,” said Sandgren in an on-court interview. “Let’s hope I can make it a third. I also wish Stan all the best on his road to recovery.”
Last year in Melbourne, the 26-year-old from Tennessee fell to Kimmer Coppejans in the first round of qualifying. He also failed to qualify here in 2013-16. Sandgren has never qualified for a major in 13 attempts. He captured three ATP Challenger career titles, two in 2017.
Sandgren played college tennis. He helped the University to Tennessee to the 2010 NCAA team final and was also an NCAA singles semifinalist in 2011, losing to teammate Rhyne Williams.
The right-hander will next take on Germany’s Maximilian Marterer, who knocked out Spanish veteran Fernando Verdasco 6-4, 4-6, 7-6, 3-6, 6-3 in three hours and 27 minutes.
Later in the evening, Roger Federer advanced to the third round with a comfortable 6-4, 6-4, 7-6 win over Jan-Lennard Struff from Germany in one hour and 56 minutes on Rod Laver Arena
“I’ve practised with him [Struff], and played against him in doubles and singles,” said Federer, in an on-court interview with former World No. 1 Jim Courier. “You know he can serve 215 or 220 [kilometres per hour] for five hours, so that’s what you have to be ready for. I had to protect my own serve and get the break with a good defence.
“It wasn’t easy. There’s an expectation on the underdog, but it was a good match and I wish him the best for the season.”