Australian Open wildcard winner Marinko Matosevic has earned the second men’s Brisbane International wildcard.
Tennis Australia’s national selectors granted Matosevic a wildcard into the men’s field leaving just one remaining men’s wildcard to be granted.
“Marinko has had a great year in 2010 making his debut in the Davis Cup squad and winning the Australian Open wildcard playoff earlier this month,” Davis Cup coach and national selector Todd Woodbridge said.
“He has lifted his ranking from No.186 to No.138, in the last year, and has become a much more professional player on and off the court in the last twelve months.
“He has had great form with two Challenger wins in Aptos, California, against Donald Young, a higher ranked American and in Calabasas, California, against another higher ranked American, Ryan Sweeting.
“Marinko really deserves this opportunity and I know he will make the most of it.”
Matosevic said he didn’t expect the wildcard into the Brisbane International.
“It is obviously fantastic news to receive a Brisbane International wildcard. I thought I was a chance after my win in Melbourne but definitely didn’t expect it,” Matosevic said.
“I sat down with Todd at the end of 2009 and we discussed my game and changed a few things. We talked about my professionalism, the mental side of my game and being more positive on the court like I am off the court.
“Following this I have had some good results and had the chance to learn from the likes of Lleyton [Hewitt], Peter [Luczak], Todd [Woodbridge], John [Fitzgerald] and Pat [Rafter] at the Davis Cup in Cairns, which really helped me learn about pressure situations.
“The Brisbane International will be the perfect preparation for the summer ahead. It has great facilities, a good ground and hot and humid conditions similar to those at the Australian Open. It will also give me the opportunity to compete against some strong players.
“I made the final round of qualifiers last year and really appreciate this opportunity to take it further in 2011.”
Matosevic won a place in the Australian Open’s main draw for the second year in a row, after defeating Peter Luczak in five sets in the final of the men’s wildcard play-off.
The twenty-five year-old wildcard will join world No.4 Robin Soderling, reigning champion and No.8 Andy Roddick, No.9 Fernando Verdasco, No.16 American Mardy Fish and crowd favourite No.20 Marcos Baghdatis in the men’s draw.
Brisbane International 2011 series packages and single sessions are on sale now.
Ground passes for the event are $12.90 with the qualifying event on Friday 31 December and Saturday 1 January 2011 remaining free.
Tickets can be purchased online at www.ticketek.com.au/brisbaneinternational or call 1300 888 104.