Acapulco, Mexico, 27 February 2024 | Leigh Rogers

Acapulco, Mexico

Alex de Minaur has made a perfect start to his title defence at a ATP 500 tournament at Acapulco.

The 25-year-old Australian powered past Japan’s Taro Daniel 6-2 6-1 in opening-round action today at the hard-court event.

De Minaur dominated on serve in the 79-minute encounter, winning 78 per cent of first-serve points and conceding just 14 points across his eight service games.

The third seed described the victory as “incredibly satisfying”.

“I didn’t play probably the way I wanted in Los Cabos (last week), so it was very important to get on the board and feel confident out there on the court,” De Minaur said.

It is De Minaur’s third career win against world No.64 Daniel.

“Tennis is all about matchups,” the defending champion noted. “A lot of the time you forget about the ranking and you’re playing the player.

“That’s the beauty of tennis. Contrasting matchups and tactics work against some players, and don’t work too well against others.”

This sets up a second-round meeting with world No.37 Sebastian Ofner.

Currently sitting at a career-high world No.9, De Minaur needs to return to the final this week to have a chance of retaining his top-10 ranking.

“You don’t want to get too ahead of yourself, in my case, I don’t even like to look at the draw,” De Minaur said.

“It’s a long way to get to that title match and at this stage I’m not even thinking about it.”

In doubles action, John Peers scored an opening-round win alongside Finland’s Harri Heliovaara. The duo edged out a 6-4 3-6 [10-7] victory against Mexican Hans Hach Verdugo and Venezuela’s Luis David Martinez.

Aussies in action – Acapulco

Men’s singles, first round
[3] Alex de Minaur (AUS) d Taro Daniel (JPN) 6-2 6-1

Men’s doubles, first round
John Peers (AUS)/Harri Heliovaara (FIN) d [Alt] Hans Hach Verdugo (MEX)/Luis David Martinez (VEN) 6-4 3-6 [10-7]

Men’s singles, first round
Max Purcell (AUS) v [8] Frances Tiafoe (USA)
Jordan Thompson (AUS) v [Q] Aleksander Kovacevic (USA)

Men’s singles, second round
[3] Alex de Minaur (AUS) v Sebastian Ofner (AUT)

Men’s doubles, first round
Max Purcell (AUS)/Jordan Thompson (AUS) v Gonzalo Escobar (ECU)/Aleksandr Nedovyesov (KAZ)

Men’s doubles, quarterfinals
John Peers (AUS)/Harri Heliovaara (FIN) v TBC

San Diego, USA

Daria Saville has notched her third consecutive singles win at a WTA 500 tournament at San Diego.

After scoring two victories to qualify, the 29-year-old Australian continued her impressive run with a 6-3 6-3 triumph against world No.58 Zhu Lin of China in the opening round.

It is Saville’s fifth top-100 win of the season.

This propels Saville, who is currently ranked No.148 as she continues her comeback from knee surgery, into a second-round showdown with either eighth-seeded Canadian Leylah Fernandez or Germany’s Tatjana Maria.

The former world No.20 is looking to advance to her first quarterfinal at WTA 500 level or above since March 2022.

Aussies in action – San Diego

Women’s singles, first round
[Q] Daria Saville (AUS) d Zhu Lin (CHN) 6-3 6-3

Women’s doubles, first round
[4] Chan Hao-Ching (TPE)/Giuliana Olmos (MEX) d Daria Saville (AUS)/Anna Blinkova 6-7(2) 6-4 [10-5]

Women’s singles, first round
[WC] Taylah Preston
 v Magdalena Frech (POL)

Women’s singles, second round
[Q] Daria Saville (AUS) v TBC

Women’s doubles, first round
[2] Storm Hunter (AUS)/Katerina Siniakova (CZE) v Miriam Kolodziejova (CZE)/Katarzyna Piter (POL)
[3] Ellen Perez (AUS)/Nicole Melichar-Martinez (USA) v Donna Vekic (CRO)/Zhu Lin (CHN)

Austin, USA

Olivia Gadecki has advanced to the doubles quarterfinals alongside British partner Olivia Nicholls at a WTA 250 tournament in Austin.

The duo dominated on serve, conceding a total of 12 points, in a 6-4 6-3 first-round win against American Danielle Collins and Mexican Fernanda Contreras.

The 21-year-old Gadecki is also the last remaining Aussie in the singles draw, after Arina Rodionova bowed out in three sets against China’s Yuan Yue in the opening round.

Aussies in action – Austin

Women’s singles, first round
[8] Yuan Yue (CHN) d Arina Rodionova (AUS) 3-6 6-3 6-1

Women’s doubles, first round
Olivia Gadecki (AUS)/Olivia Nicholls (GBR) d Danielle Collins (USA)/Fernanda Contreras (MEX) 6-4 6-3

Women’s singles, first round
[Q] Olivia Gadecki (AUS) v [3] Danielle Collins (USA)

Women’s doubles, first round
[WC] Maya Joint (AUS)/Sabina Zeynalova (UKR) v Elixane Lechemia (FRA)/Anna Siskova (CZE)

Women’s doubles, quarterfinals
Olivia Gadecki (AUS)/Olivia Nicholls (GBR) v TBC

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