Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Alex De Minaur beats American Tennys Sandgren in the first round

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Australian Alex De Minaur is in the second round of the Australian Open after beating American Tennys Sandgren in straight sets.

De Minaur, ranked world No.23, was tested in the first set before taking full control of the game to win 7-6, 6-1, 6-1.

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It was a dominating performance from the Australian, who didn’t give his 51st ranked American opponent a single glance.

Sandgren, who made the quarterfinals of the Australian Open last year, was one of many stars to endure a hard 14-day lockdown.

He tested positive for COVID-19 on a flight to Australia, his plane first turning around on the tarmac when news of his positive result arrived. He was finally cleared for takeoff with the American on board.

Sandgren, who has never shied away from delivering a strong opinion, was one of the fiercest contenders to voice his displeasure with the Victorian government and Tennis Australia’s biosecurity protocols.

When asked after the game if he had endured a “brutal” month of preparation, Sandgren denied that was the case, although he admitted his preparation was not “ideal”.

“No, certainly not one of the most brutal [preparations]Sandgren said.

“Not ideal for training for a tennis tournament like this, certainly not for a three out of five game against Alex, who has not had similar training circumstances, but as far as difficult months or brutal, not brutal at all, no.

“To work out and play video games in my room, it’s okay.”

Responding to his opponent’s comments, de Minaur admitted that Sandgren had gone through an “unfortunate” set of circumstances with the two-week hard quarantine period.

“Look, he struggled with the flight he was arriving in Australia,” replied de Minaur.

“He must have been in hard quarantine.

“But look, I had a game to play. Glad I did everything on my own as well as I could, and that was the main thing.”

De Minaur will face Argentina’s Pablo Cuevas, 35, on Thursday in the tournament’s second round.

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