Bernard Tomic’s French Open hopes ended by 16-year-old in qualifying
Bernard Tomic’s French Open campaign is over with the Australian beaten in the first round of qualifying by 16-year-old Arthur Fils. Local wildcard Fils created the headlines on a rain-interrupted day at Roland Garros as he fought back from a set down so defeat the seasoned Tomic 6-7 (5-7), 7-6 (7-1), 6-3.
World No 213 Tomic, among 12 Australians attempting to earn a spot in the second grand slam of 2021, was one of the most high-profile players to be ousted on Monday. The mercurial 28-year-old was unable to match his efforts of February when he qualified for the Australian Open before going out in the second round.
On Monday in Paris, Tomic battled hard but gifted youngster Fils – the 2020 Orange Bowl champion who is ranked 1,034th – prevailed in a match that lasted two hours and 12 minutes.
“I think clay is my favourite surface. I love it because it gives me time and I can play more with my forehand,” Fils told RolandGarros.com. “Every match is a fight and I love it. I think I only lost two matches on clay in juniors.”
Fils will next meet another Australian, Marc Polmans, who accounted for his countryman Alex Bolt 6-3, 3-6, 6-3. World No 208 Aleksandar Vukic advanced to the second round with a 6-3, 6-1 thumping of Portuguese Frederico Ferreira Silva.
Thanasi Kokkinakis, fresh from his Challenger tour triumph in Italy, will step up his burgeoning comeback with a tough opener on Tuesday against American Mackenzie McDonald while Matt Ebden will also be in action.
Arina Rodionova, who enjoyed her best grand slam performance at Roland Garros when reaching the third round six years ago, crashed out to India’s Ankita Raina 3-6, 6-1, 6-4. Ellen Perez overcame an opponent ranked more than 100 places above her in Russian Vitalia Diatchenko 7-6 (7-5), 3-6, 7-5.