London, Great Britain, 28 June 2022 | Leigh Rogers

Jaimee Fourlis was planning to enjoy a break in Paris alongside her sister over the next fortnight, but instead is set to make her Wimbledon main draw debut.

“A little bit of a travel re-arrangement, but that’s for the better,” she laughed.

The 22-year-old from Melbourne is overjoyed after qualifying at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time in her career.

“I didn’t expect to be here, but I’m here now,” said Fourlis, who saved two match points in her opening round qualifying match.

“You can’t really put to words how it feels … I’m pretty honoured.”

This will be Fourlis’ fourth career Grand Slam main draw appearance – and first since competing at Australian Open 2018 as a teenage wildcard.

After undergoing a shoulder reconstruction in 2020, it has been a long and difficult road back to Grand Slam level.

“I had surgery nearly two years ago and I think that’s kind of where reality hit to be honest, where I might not be able to get back to this level,” Fourlis said.

“But through hard work and persistence I’ve shown that I can. And that’s a credit to my team back home as well. There’s a lot of people that have helped me get to where I am. So I’m really thankful for them always sticking by me and to my family as well. I know now that I can do anything I put my mind to.”

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After starting the 2022 season ranked No.329, Fourlis currently sits at a career-high world No.150.

She has built an impressive 36-13 win-loss record and claimed three ITF titles, as well as progressing to the Australian Open mixed doubles final alongside compatriot Jason Kubler.

“To know from where I’ve come from to now, it’s huge,” said Fourlis, who has won 15 of her past 16 matches.

Fourlis will face Belgian veteran Kirsten Flipkens in the opening round of her Wimbledon debut. The 36-year-old is a former world No.13 and was a Wimbledon 2013 semifinalist.

“I know that she’s a high-level player and she’s incredibly experienced. I’m going to have to go out there and play my best tennis,” Fourlis said.

They have met once before, in Fourlis’ WTA main draw debut at Hobart in January 2017. Flipkens won that match in two tight sets.

“I don’t know if she’ll remember that, but I definitely do remember that,” Fourlis said.

“It’s going to be a good battle.”

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