San Jose, USA, 4 August 2021 | Leigh Rogers

San Jose, USA

Australia’s Ajla Tomljanovic has sensationally saved two match points in a 1-6 7-5 7-5 first-round victory against American Amanda Anisimova at a WTA 500 tournament in San Jose.

The 19-year-old Anisimova dominated the match early.

“She really kind of killed me in that first set,” Tomljanovic admitted.

But Tomljanovic fought back from a 3-5 deficit in the second set, saving a match point in the 10th game and reeling off four consecutive games to level the match at one set apiece.

“I mentally stayed tough,” said the world No.50. “I didn’t give up even though I was down 6-1 5-3 pretty comfortably.”

The 27-year-old Australian showed more of her fighting spirit in the deciding set, saving another match point at 3-5 and then winning the final four games in a two-hour and 10-minute battle.

“I found a way to win,” said a pleased Tomljanovic. “I knew my tennis was there if I could start hitting out and finding my spots, which I did.”

Aussies in action – San Jose

RESULTS
Women’s singles, first round
Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS) d Amanda Anisimova (USA) 1-6 7-5 7-5

COMING UP
Women’s singles, second round
Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS)
v [8] Yulia Putintseva (KAZ)

Women’s doubles, first round
[3] Ellen Perez (AUS)/Kveta Peschke (CZE) v Elixane Lechemia (FRA)/Ingrid Neel (USA)
Arina Rodionova (AUS)/Kaitlin Christian (USA) v [1] Gabriela Dabrowski (CAN)/Luisa Stefani (BRA)

Cluj-Napoca, Romania

Seone Mendez has scored her first WTA-level main draw win at a WTA 250 clay-court tournament in Romania.

The 22-year-old Australian, who is ranked No.269 and earned her spot in the draw as a qualifier, scored a 6-2 6-2 victory against Croatia’s Jana Fett.

Mendez, who is making her first appearance in a tour-level main draw, now plays Ukrainian Lesia Tsurenko in the second round.

Aussies in action – Cluj-Napoca

RESULTS
Women’s singles, first round
[Q] Seone Mendez (AUS) d [Q] Jana Fett (CRO) 6-2 6-2

COMING UP
Women’s singles, second round
[Q] Seone Mendez (AUS)
v Lesia Tsurenko (UKR)

Washington, USA

It has been a day to forget for Australian players at an ATP 500 tournament in Washington, with four losing opening-round matches. This included defending champion Nick Kyrgios.

World No.107-ranked American Mackenzie McDonald recorded a 6-4 6-4 victory against Kyrgios. The Australian hit nine aces in the 77-minute battle, but served up six double faults and was broken twice.

After saving two match points on serve at 3-5 in the second set, Kyrgios earned two break points on McDonald’s serve in the next game. The Australian’s hopes of staging a comeback were soon quashed though, with McDonald fighting back to close out victory.

Brandon Nakashima, a 19-year-old American who has reached back-to-back ATP finals in the past fortnight, continued his winning run with a 6-3 6-3 victory against Australia’s Alexei Popyrin.

Swedish qualifer Elias Ymer also demonstrated the power of momentum, scoring a three-set win against Jordan Thompson, while American Tennys Sandgren eliminated James Duckworth in a three-set first-round battle.

Alex de Minaur and John Millman, who both received first-round byes, are the last remaining Australians in the singles draw.

Aussies in action – Washington

RESULTS
Men’s singles, first round
Mackenzie McDonald (USA) d Nick Kyrgios (AUS) 6-4 6-4
Tennys Sandgren (USA) d James Duckworth (AUS) 6-3 2-6 6-2
[WC] Brandon Nakashima (USA) d Alexei Popyrin (AUS) 6-3 6-3
[Q] Elias Ymer (SWE) d Jordan Thompson (AUS) 3-6 7-5 6-3

COMING UP
Men’s singles, second round
[3] Alex de Minaur (AUS) v Steve Johnson (USA)
[11] John Millman (AUS) v [Q] Elias Ymer (SWE)

Men’s doubles, first round
[1] John Peers (AUS)/Filip Polasek (SVK) v Alex de Minaur (AUS)/John Millman (AUS)
[WC] Nick Kyrgios (AUS)/Frances Tiafoe (USA) v [3] Rohan Bopanna (IND)/Ivan Dodig (CRO)
Max Purcell (AUS)/Fabrice Martin (FRA) v [2] Neal Skupski (GBR)/Michael Venus (NZL)

Men’s doubles, quarterfinals
Luke Saville (AUS)/Cameron Norrie (GBR) v TBC