Melbourne, Australia, 10 January 2023 | Leigh Rogers

Marc Polmans has continued the strong start for local contenders in the Australian Open 2023 qualifying competition.

The 25-year-old Australian scored an impressive 6-3 6-4 victory against world No.140 Lukas Klein in first-round qualifying action at Melbourne Park today.

“I’m happy to start off my AO campaign with a straight-sets match,” Polmans said after defeating the No.24-seed Slovak. “Lukas is a very tough customer. He serves very big and doesn’t give you much rhythm. So I’m happy to come through in straight sets and save my energy now for tomorrow.”

Polmans, who achieved a career-high ranking of world No.116 in October 2020, underwent left ankle surgery last year and was sidelined for six months.

“Thankfully that is all in the past now. But last year was not an easy one,” Polmans said.

Since returning, Polmans has been rebuilding his form on the secondary ATP Challenger Tour. He has advanced to the quarterfinals or better in five of his past seven tournaments, including in Canberra last week.

From a ranking of world No.787 in October, he now sits at world No.303.

“I’m going to keep working to get (my ranking) back up,” said Polmans, who has used a protected ranking of No.209 to enter this week’s qualifying competition.

While determined to return to the world’s top 150, Polmans’ immediate goal is to qualify at his home Grand Slam for the first time.

He has previously made three main-draw appearances at Melbourne Park, each time as a wildcard.

“It would mean everything,” he said of qualifying. “All of us Aussies want to play in the main draw in front of our friends and family. I’ve been lucky enough to get a wildcard the last few years, but this year I really want to earn my spot. I’ve got two more rounds to go.”

Tickets to attend Australian Open qualifying are just $5 for kids and $10 for adults. Fans will also be able to see some of the world’s top-ranked players compete in practice matches at Melbourne Park.

> BUY NOW: Australian Open 2023 tickets

AUSSIES IN ACTION – Australian Open

Men’s qualifying singles, first round
Marc Polmans (AUS) d [24] Lukas Klein (SVK) 6-3 6-4
Li Tu (AUS) d [25] Jozef Kovalik (SVK) 6-2 6-2
[WC] Tristan Schoolkate (AUS) d Kimmer Coppejans (BEL) 6-7(7) 7-5 6-4
[6] Denis Kudla (USA) d Omar Jasika (AUS) 6-1 6-1
[30] Yosuke Watanuki (JPN) d [WC] Philip Sekulic (AUS) 6-4 6-2
Mikhail Kukushkin (KAZ) d James Duckworth (AUS) 7-5 6-4
Rio Noguchi (JPN) d [WC] Edward Winter (AUS) 7-5 6-1

READ: Tu achieves major career milestone in AO 2023 qualifying

Men’s qualifying singles, second round
[21] Aleksandar Vukic (AUS) v Thiago Agustin Tirante (ARG)
Alex Bolt (AUS) 
v [22] Matteo Arnaldi (ITA)
Max Purcell (AUS) v Damir Dzumhur (BIH)
Marc Polmans (AUS) v Marco Trungelliti (ARG)
Li Tu (AUS) v Laurent Lokoli (FRA)
[WC] Dane Sweeny (AUS) v Luciano Darderi (ITA)
[WC] Adam Walton (AUS) v Peter Gojowczyk (GER)
[WC] Tristan Schoolkate (AUS) v Raul Brancaccio (ITA)

> VIEW: Full Australian Open 2023 men’s qualifying singles draw

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