Aus Open qualifiers: Yuki moves to second round, Myneni ousted


Yuki Bhambri advanced to the second round of the Australian Open Qualifiers with a straight sets win of 6-1, 6-4 over seventh seed Stefan Kozlov.

Saketh Myneni, the other Indian in the fray, ended his campaign after losing 0-6, 2-6 to Germany's Peter Gojowczyk.

Yuki, ranked 534th in the world, is now the sole Indian contender for the main draw of the singles event. He next faces Serbian Pedja Krstin, who came from behind to beat Czech Republic's Zdenek Konar 3-6 6-1 7-5 in his opening round.

Yuki won 20 out of the 28 net points in the match. While he lost his serve twice, he broke Kozlov six times.

"It's a good start for me. It was a tough first round and I am happy to be able to play solid and win this one. I am enjoying playing and that's the most important that I can compete," Yuki told PTI.

Yuki will now need two more wins to qualify for the main draw.

Interestingly, Yuki was the last Indian singles player to qualify for the main draws of the Australian Open. Courtesy his top 100 ranking, he gained a direct entry into the year's first major in 2016. He had also qualified for the 2015 Australian Open, where he lost to Andy Murray in the first round.