Melbourne, Australia, 11 January 2023 | Leigh Rogers

Perserverance is paying off for Tristan Schoolkate in the Australian Open 2023 qualifying competition, winning two hard-fought matches to keep his qualifying dreams alive.

The 21-year-old from Perth moved into the final round with a 6-7(4) 6-4 7-5 victory against world No.146 Raul Brancaccio this evening at Melbourne Park.

“It was a tricky one today, but I’m glad I got through,” said Schoolkate after defeating the 25-year-old Italian.

“I was pretty composed. I stayed clear with what I wanted to do and served well on some big moments to save a couple of break points late in the third. I took my chances, which really helped.”

Schoolkate struck 22 aces and 54 winners to record the first top-150 win of his career.

“There’s not much in these matches,” he said. “Being young, you’re playing guys who are older and more experienced. It often comes down to a couple of points here and there, and I’m glad I’m coming out on top of those at the moment.”

Schoolkate, who is currently ranked at a career-high world No.365, is contesting Australian Open qualifying for the fourth time. His previous best result was a second-round appearance in 2021.

“I think I’m definitely improving, I feel fitter and stronger,” he said.

He will face 32-year-old German Jan-Lennard Struff, a former world No.29, in the final round tomorrow.

“I’m in the last round, so I’m going to give it my all and hopefully I can go one more,” Schoolkate said.

Tickets to attend Australian Open qualifying, which concludes tomorrow, 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, second round
[21] Aleksandar Vukic (AUS) d Thiago Agustin Tirante (ARG) 7-6(4) 6-3
Max Purcell (AUS) 
d Damir Dzumhur (BIH) 6-4 7-5
[WC] Tristan Schoolkate (AUS) d Raul Brancaccio (ITA) 6-7(4) 6-4 7-5
[22] Matteo Arnaldi (ITA) d Alex Bolt (AUS) 5-7 7-5 6-4
Marco Trungelliti (ARG) d Marc Polmans (AUS) 3-6 6-2 6-3
Laurent Lokoli (FRA) d Li Tu (AUS) 6-1 6-7(6) 6-2
Luciano Darderi (ITA) d [WC] Dane Sweeny (AUS) 7-5 1-6 6-1
Peter Gojowczyk (GER) d [WC] Adam Walton (AUS) 2-6 6-2 6-4

> READ MORE: Vukic advances into final round of AO 2023 qualifying

> READ MORE: Aussie women crash out in Australian Open qualifying

Men’s qualifying singles, final round
[21] Aleksandar Vukic (AUS) v [9] Michael Mmoh (USA)
Max Purcell (AUS) v [22] Matteo Arnaldi (ITA)
[WC] Tristan Schoolkate (AUS) v Jan-Lennard Struff (GER)

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

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