2 February 2023 | Tennis NSW

Late on Saturday night, Aussie wildcards Rinky Hijikata (NSW) and Jason Kubler (QLD) were crowned Australian Open 2023 Doubles Champions.

Eliminating seven of the world’s top-20 doubles players during their fairytale run, the pair secured their maiden Grand Slam title by defeating world No. 36 Jan Zielinski (POL) and World No. 40 Hugo Nys (MON) in straight sets, 6-4 7-6(4).

“I think we were just happy to be in the draw, to be honest,” Hijikata said. “We looked at our draw, we were like, ‘Geez, if we could win one match or so, that would be a pretty good effort’.

“It’s been a ridiculous two weeks … I can’t really believe this just happened.”

The 21-year-old’s Australian Open Singles debut also started off strong. Recovering from two-sets down, Hijikata made a remarkable comeback and secured a victory against Yannick Hanfmann (GER) 4-6 4-6 6-3 7-6(5) 6-3.

“I mean, I don’t really know how to put it into words,” said an elated Hijikata. “It was crazy out there. It’s definitely the craziest match I’ve ever played in my life.”

Unfortunately, the dream debut came to an end in round two at the hands of World No. 4 Stefanos Tsitsipas (GRE).

Hijikata’s tennis journey started at the age of three and ever since, the Epping superstar has been making waves in the tennis community.  A former King’s Boy, Rinky spent many hours on court with his father Mac and trained at the NSW National Academy based at Sydney Olympic Park, building his base for his professional career.  It was fitting to have his childhood coach courtside with him Jarrad Bunt, who is now the coach of Jason Kubler.

The Australian Open Doubles Champion is back in action this week and will headline at the Burnie International as the second seed. Hijikata will take on fellow Aussie, Blake Ellis today in the second round.

Keep up with Rinky Hijikata and the Burnie International live scores here.

Congratulations Rinky on an incredible two-weeks at the Australian Open.