Jacques van der Westhuyzen

By Jacques van der Westhuyzen

Head of Sport

SA’s Lloyd Harris qualifies for Aussie Open

The year's first major tennis tournament gets under way in Melbourne on Sunday.

South Africa’s best men’s tennis player and former world number 31, Lloyd Harris, has qualified for the men’s singles draw at the Australian Open, starting in Melbourne on Sunday.

Harris beat Hugo Gaston from France 6-0, 6-2 on Friday in his final qualifying match to advance to the year’s first Grand Slam tournament.

Currently 149th in world rankings

Earlier in the week, the 26-year-old Cape Town native triumphed over another French player, Kyrian Jacquet (7-5, 6-4), and Daniel Rincon of Spain (6-2, 6-2) in his first two qualifying matches.

Currently ranked 149th in the ATP world rankings, Harris will be the sole South African participant in the men’s singles event at the Australian Open.

Harris, who dropped outside the top 100 ATP rankings due to an injury-enforced hiatus, will face Frenchman Quentin Halys (ranked 101st in the world) in the first round when the main draw gets underway on Sunday. It will be the first time the two players meet on the ATP Tour.

Harris reached the second round in Melbourne last year before crashing out to Hungarian player Marton Fucsovics 2-6, 3-6, 7-5, 4-6.

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