Atlanta, USA, 26 July 2021 | Leigh Rogers

Atlanta, USA

Australian Chris O’Connell has earned his place in the singles draw as a qualifier at an ATP 250 tournament in Atlanta.

The world No.131 was leading 4-2 when Austrian Sebastian Ofner retired with illness during their final qualifying round match.

It is the fifth tour-level tournament that O’Connell has qualified for so far this season.

The 27-year-old, who has drawn American Denis Kudla in the opening round, joins three other Australians in the singles main draw.

Jordan Thompson enters the event after making back-to-back tour-level quarterfinals and begins his campaign against eighth-seeded South African Lloyd Harris.

Nick Kyrgios, the Atlanta 2016 champion making his return from an abdominal injury that derailed his Wimbledon campaign, also faces a South African opponent – former world No.5 Kevin Anderson, who recently won his seventh career ATP title.

While Alexei Popyrin has been pitted against American Steve Johnson in the opening round.

Matt Ebden lost in the final round of the singles qualifying draw and now turns his attention to doubles, where he is seeded fourth alongside fellow Aussie John-Patrick Smith.

Australian Alex de Minaur is the defending singles champion at the tournament, but has not entered.

Aussies in action – Atlanta

Men’s qualifying singles, final round
[2] Chris O’Connell (AUS) d [6] Sebastian Ofner (AUT) 4-2 ret.
[3] Evgeny Donskoy (RUS) d Matt Ebden (AUS) 6-4 6-4

Men’s singles, first round
Jordan Thompson (AUS) v [8] Lloyd Harris (RSA)
Nick Kyrgios (AUS) v Kevin Anderson (RSA)
Alexei Popyrin (AUS) v Steve Johnson (USA)
[Q] Chris O’Connell (AUS) v Denis Kudla (USA)

Men’s doubles, first round
[4] Matt Ebden (AUS)/John-Patrick Smith (AUS) v Taylor Fritz (USA)/Cameron Norrie (GBR)
Alexei Popyrin (AUS)/Matt Reid (AUS) v Andre Goransson (SWE)/Frederik Nielsen (DEN)
[WC] Nick Kyrgios (AUS)/Jack Sock (USA) v [3] Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureski (PAK)/Divij Sharan (IND)
Jordan Thompson (AUS)/Steve Johnson (USA) v Nathaniel Lammons (USA)/Jackson Withrow (USA)

Kitzbubel, Austria

After an unsuccessful attempt to qualify for the singles draw at an ATP 250 tournament in Kitzbuhel, Australian Marc Polmans turns his focus this week to doubles.

The 24-year-old is partnering Spain’s Pedro Martinez at the clay-court event.

Polmans has had a great season in doubles, winning three ATP Challenger titles.

Aussies in action – Kitzbuhel

Men’s doubles, first round
Marc Polmans (AUS)/Pedro Martinez (ESP) v Marc Lopez (ESP)/Jaume Munar (ESP)