Sydney, Australia, 10 January 2022 | Leigh Rogers

Local hope Jordan Thompson has begun his Sydney Tennis Classic campaign in style.

The 27-year-old Australian wildcard scored a 6-4 6-2 victory against American Marcos Giron in first-round singles action at Sydney Olympic Park Tennis Centre today.

World No.66 Giron made a strong start, racing to a 3-1 lead. But from there, world No.73 Thompson won 11 of the next 14 games to seal victory in 88-minutes.

“I remember coming to this tournament as a kid all the time,” Thompson said.

“You know, every time I step on that court, I just remember as a kid, that’s where I wanted to be. I wanted to be playing on the centre court at Sydney Olympic Park.”

The result sets up a second-round showdown with fourth-seed American Reilly Opelka.

“I have played Reilly once before, a long time a go at a Challenger, but he’s a much better player now,” Thompson said. “It never gets easier. In fact, it gets harder.”

Priscilla Hon was beaten in the opening round of the women’s singles competition, with Romanian Jaqueline Cristian recording a 7-6(5) 7-5 victory. While world No.10 Ons Jabeur proved too strong for Astra Sharma, scoring a 6-1 6-3 win in their first-round encounter.

In men’s qualifying singles action, Sydney local Chris O’Connell booked his spot in the main draw with a 6-3 6-4 win against world No.86 Italian Stefano Travaglia.

After scoring the 10th top-100 victory of his career, world No.173 O’Connell has drawn fellow qualifier Sebastian Baez in the opening round. It will be his first meeting with the No.95-ranked Argentine.

In other news, Ash Barty withdrew from the tournament earlier today.

After claiming the Adelaide International singles and doubles titles yesterday, the world No.1 will instead head to Melbourne to prepare for the upcoming Australian Open.

Australian wildcard Nick Kyrgios, who was scheduled to play seventh seed Fabio Fognini this evening, has also withdrawn from the tournament due to illness.

Sydney Tennis Classic

Men’s qualifying singles, final round
Christopher O’Connell (AUS)
d [2] Stefano Travaglia (ITA) 6-3 6-4

Men’s singles, first round
[WC] Jordan Thompson (AUS) d Marcos Giron (USA) 6-4 6-2

Women’s singles, first round
[7] Ons Jabeur (TUN) d [WC] Astra Sharma (AUS) 6-1 6-3
Jaqueline Cristian (ROU) d [WC] Priscilla Hon (AUS) 7-6(5) 7-5

Women’s doubles, first round
[2] Shuko Aoyama (JPN)/Ena Shibahara (JPN) d Alison Bai (AUS)/Alicia Smith (AUS) walkover
Ekaterina Alexandrova (RUS)/Natela Dzalamidze (RUS) d [WC] Isabella Bozicevic (AUS)/Alexandra Osborne (AUS) 6-2 6-2

Men’s doubles, first round
Alexei Popyrin (AUS)/Matt Reid (AUS) d Pablo Andujar (ESP)/Pedro Martinez (ESP) 6-2 6-2

Men’s singles, first round
Alexei Popyrin (AUS) v Pedro Martinez (ESP)
[Q] Christopher O’Connell (AUS) v [Q] Sebastian Baez (ARG)

Men’s singles, second round
[WC] Jordan Thompson (AUS) v [4] Reilly Opelka (USA)

Women’s singles, first round
Ajla Tomljanovic (AUS) v [Q] Anna-Karolina Schmiedlova (SVK)

Men’s doubles, first round
[WC] Moerani Bouzige (AUS)/Matthew Christopher Romios (AUS) v Simone Bolelli (ITA)/Fabio Fognini (ITA)

Men’s doubles, second round
[3] John Peers (AUS)/Filip Polasek (SVK) v TBC
Alexei Popyrin (AUS)/Matt Reid (AUS) v [8] Andrey Golubev (KAZ)/Franko Skugor (CRO)

Women’s doubles, first round
Gabriella Da Silva-Fick (AUS)/Alana Parnaby (AUS) v [4] Alexa Guarachi (CHI)/Nicole Melichar-Martinez (USA)
Astra Sharma (AUS)/Aranxta Rus (NED) v [WC] Michaela Haet (AUS)/Lisa Mays (AUS)

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