Atlanta, United States, 27 July 2023 | Matt Trollope

Atlanta, USA

Defending champion Alex de Minaur out-steadied Thanasi Kokkinakis to return to the quarterfinals of the ATP 250 tournament in Atlanta.

In the first professional meeting between the two Australians, De Minaur rebounded from 3-0 down in the second set to complete a 6-3 6-4 triumph.

De Minaur, who won the Atlanta titles in 2019 and 2022, improves to 10-1 lifetime at the event. He next faces Ugo Humbert.

“I love playing here. I don’t know what it is; we always get some great crowds. It’s probably one of the courts where I play my best tennis and I’ve had my most success,” said De Minaur, who is on a nine-match winning streak at the tournament.

“I’m a very good friend of Thanasi and we know each other very well. Yesterday we were hanging out all day. So it’s always tough to play your mates, but it was a tricky match and happy to get my Atlanta campaign started.”

Earlier on Wednesday, Aleksandar Vukic continued his breakthrough season by advancing to his first tour-level quarterfinal of 2023.

Vukic upset No.4 seed Yoshihito Nishioka 4-6 7-5 7-6(3) for his 40th match win of the season, helped by 26 aces.

World No.31 Nishioka is the highest-ranked player Vukic has defeated this year, a result that should see the big-hitting Aussie crack the top 80.

“I’m playing great, I’m serving well, and yeah, can’t wait (for what’s next),” Vukic said.

Vukic will play the winner of Wednesday night’s match between Christopher Eubanks and Brandon Nakashima.

Aussies in action – Atlanta

Men’s singles, second round
Aleksandar Vukic (AUS) d [4] Yoshihito Nishioka (JPN) 4-6 7-5 7-6(3)
[2] Alex de Minaur (AUS) d Thanasi Kokkinakis (AUS) 6-3 6-4

Men’s doubles, first round
William Blumberg (USA)/Rajeev Ram (USA) d John-Patrick Smith (AUS)/Dan Evans (GBR) 6-2 1-6 [10-4]

Men’s singles, quarterfinals
[2] Alex de Minaur (AUS) v [7] Ugo Humbert (FRA)
Aleksandar Vukic (AUS) v TBC

Men’s doubles, quarterfinals
Max Purcell (AUS)/Jordan Thompson (AUS) v [WC] Trent Bryde (USA)/Ethan Quinn (USA) 
John Peers (AUS)
/Marcelo Melo (BRA) v William Blumberg (USA)/Rajeev Ram (USA)

Hamburg, Germany

Daria Saville has continued her encouraging comeback to the tour with a fourth straight win on clay in Hamburg.

The Australian, who qualified for the main draw, is now through to the quarterfinals after saving a set point to beat German Tamara Korpatsch 7-6(6) 6-2.

It is the fifth win in Saville’s comeback from knee surgery, and sets up a quarterfinal clash with another local star in Jule Niemeier, who reached the 2022 Wimbledon quarterfinals.

Fellow Aussie Storm Hunter came extremely close to joining Saville in the quarterfinals of the WTA 250 tournament.

But despite holding a 6-0, 5-3 lead, plus match points in the following game, Hunter fell to a 0-6 7-6(2) 6-4 loss to local wildcard Noma Noha Akugue.

Aussies in action – Hamburg

Women’s singles, second round
[Q] Daria Saville (AUS) d Tamara Korpatsch (GER) 7-6(6) 6-2
[WC] Noma Noha Akugue (GER) d Storm Hunter (AUS) 0-6 7-6(2) 6-4

Women’s singles, quarterfinals
[Q] Daria Saville (AUS) v Jule Niemeier (GER)

Umag, Croatia

Alexei Popyrin notched another win on clay in Croatia to progress to his first ATP-level quarterfinal since Adelaide in January.

The powerful Aussie outplayed No.3 seed Sebastian Ofner 6-4 6-1 to set up a quarterfinal showdown with local wildcard Dino Prizmic, this year’s Roland Garros junior singles champion.

Victory over the young Croatian would boost 90th-ranked Popyrin back to the brink of the top 80, and send him into his first semifinal of the season.

Popyrin has now won 12 of the 18 clay-court matches he has played in 2023.

Aussies in action – Umag

Men’s singles, second round
Alexei Popyrin (AUS) d [3] Sebastian Ofner (AUT) 6-4 6-1

Men’s singles, quarterfinals
Alexei Popyrin (AUS) v Dino Prizmic (CRO)

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