Tennis player Botic van de Zandschulp can get ready for his debut at a grandslam tournament. Thanks to a 7-6 (4), 6-4 victory over the Frenchman Mathias Bourgue in the final qualifying round, he has joined the main schedule of the Australian Open.
The first grandslam tournament of the year starts only on February 8. All participants have to quarantine in Melbourne for two weeks due to the coronapandemic. For this reason, the qualifying tournament was moved to Qatar.
Van de Zandschulp, 156th on the world rankings, appeared in the first set with 3-1, but the French number 214 of the world broke back, so a tiebreak had to decide the set.
In the second act there was again a quick break for Van de Zandschulp, but Bourgue also destroyed that one. A new break in the tenth game helped the 25-year-old Dutchman, who cashed his second match point, to win.
Robin Haase failed to get a ticket to the main tournament. In the third and final qualifying round of Quentin Halys, also from France: 3-6, 4-6, 4-6, making Van de Zandschulp the only Dutchman in the mens main tournament.
The 33-year-old Haase was in the top 100 in the world for years, so he was always assured of direct participation in the grand slams. In recent years, however, he has fallen far from the world ranking and has been forced to play qualifications. Against Halys, Haase once handed in his service game in both sets, while leaving breakpoints unused.