News & Media

Crowds flock to opening day

4 January 2009, by Brisbane International Tennis

Crowds descended on the first day of play at the Brisbane International with 8824 tennis fans attending the new sporting event.

The French were the day’s standouts with the seventh seed Richard Gasquet and women’s third seed Marion Bartoli both winning their first-round matches, Bartoli defeating Brisbane’s own Monika Wejnert 6-1 6-2.

Jarmila Gajdosova flew the Australian flag in the women’s draw winning 6-4 6-2 against a higher ranked player, Shuai Peng and will meet Victoria Azarenka, the tournament’s second seed, in the next round.

Gajdosova said “I was pretty happy with what I have achieved today.  The game was a great experience for me after having not played many matches since October.  I am hoping that my performances will continue to improve throughout the tournament.”

Gajdosova’s next opponent Azarenka defeated Kateryna Bondarenko from the Ukraine 6-0 6-2.

Brisbane International Tournament Director, Steve Ayles said he was please with the first day of the tournament.

“Today has exceeded all expectations.  The event has already generated a media spot on Brisbane and the crowd attendance has been amazing.  Today is a testament to Queenslander’s love of tennis and I know the enthusiasm will continue to build.”

Crowd favourite and local girl Samantha Stosur was also due to play on Pat Rafter Arena today but has been rescheduled to play tomorrow against Ai Sugiyama from Japan after Russian Maria Kirilenko was forced to withdraw due to injury.

In men’s qualifying singles three Australian boys shined with Sam Groth, Joe Sirianni and Peter Luczak all progressing through to the second round after straight-set victories over their higher ranked opponents.

Sam Groth, No.278, defeated Canadian Frank Dancevic, No.130, in a strong straight-sets performance with Peter Luczak, No.156, ousting Russian Andrey Golubev, No.89, 6-3 6-1.

Groth broke back in the ninth game of the second set and saved three set points in the 12th before going on to win the match. Groth will play top seed Teimuraz Gabashvili from Russia in the next round. 

Post match, Joe Sirianni who defeated Peter Polansky from Canada, said “I played well and I felt I was a lot more solid than last time when he beat me.  This time I was able to exploit his weakness.”

Fellow Australians Colin Ebelthite, Carsten Ball, Greg Jones, Chris Guccione, Robert Smeets and Mark Verryth were defeated in the qualifying rounds.

Today’s results are as follows:

Men’s Qualifying Singles -1st Round
T Gabashvili (RUS) d I Bozolac (SRB) 4-6 6-3 6-4
S Groth (AUS) d F Dancevic (CAN) 6-3 7-6 (1)
E Korolev (RUS) d M Fischer (AUT) 6-2 6-1
K Anderson (RSA) d G Jones (AUS) 7-6 (3) 6-4
B Reynolds (USA) d M Elgin (RUS) 4-6 6-2 6-3
L Gregorc (SLO) d J Huta Galung (NED) 6-4 6-4
P Luczak (AUS) d A Golubev (KAZ) 6-3 6-1
M Zverev (GER) d G Lapentti (ECU) 6-3 6-4
M Kukushkin (KAZ) d R Smeets (AUS) 7-5 6-4
A Delic (USA) d C Guccione (AUS) 6-4 7-5
T Bellucci (BRA) d C Ball (AUS) 6-4 6-3
J Sirianni (AUS) d P Polansky (CAN) 6-2 6-4
M Crugnola (ITA) d M Verryth (AUS) 6-4 6-4
G Muller (LUX) d C Ebelthite (AUS) 6 (3)-7 6-4 6-4
A Stoppini (ITA) d J Isner (USA) 7-5 6-3
X Malisse (BEL) d S Stadler(GER) 6-2 6-1

Men’s Singles First Round
R Gasquet (FRA) d M Gicquel (FRA) 4-6 6-2 6-2
R Soderling (SWE) d S QUERREY (USA) 6-3 6-3
J Benneteau (FRA) d R Ginepri (USA) 3-6 6-3 7-5
T Dent (USA) d S Darcis (BEZ) 7-6 (0) 6-2

Women’s Qualifying Singles Final Round
S Karatantcheva (BUL) v E Rodina (RUS) 6-1 7-6 (4)
R Vinci (ITA) d K Sprem (CRO) 3-6 6-3 6-2
A L Groenefeld (GER) d J Coin (FRA) 2-6 6-4 6-4
M Czink (HUN) d Z Yan (CHN) 6-4 4-6 7-5

Women’s Singles First Round
J Gajdosova (SVK) d S Peng (CHN) 6-4 6-2
V Azarenka (BLR) d K Bondarenko (UKR) 6-0 6-2
M Bartoli (FRA) d M Wejnert (AUS) 6-1 6-2
A Kleybanova (RUS) d K Kanepi (EST) 6-1 6-4

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