De Minaur ready for Roland Garros challenge | 29 May, 2023 | All News | News and Features | News and Events
Alex de Minaur is among three Australians scheduled to compete on day two at Roland Garros 2023.
Alex de Minaur, Australia’s top-ranked man, is feeling confident ahead of his first-round match today at Roland Garros.
“I do feel like I can do some damage and play well,” world No.19 De Minaur said.
Yet De Minaur is wary of his opponent, world No.73 Ilya Ivashka.
“He’s a big-hitting guy who likes to take the initiative in points,” De Minaur said. “I’m expecting a battle. It’s never easy here at Roland Garros.”
The world No.19 is one of three Australians scheduled to compete on day two in Paris.
De Minaur, Chris O’Connell and Alexei Popyrin are all looking to join compatriots Storm Hunter, Thanasi Kokkinakis and Jason Kubler in the second round at the clay-court Grand Slam.
Roland Garros is broadcast live in Australia on the Nine Network and Stan Sport, with coverage beginning from 6.30pm AEST.
Aussies in action on day two:
 Alex de Minaur (AUS) v Ilya Ivashka
Men’s singles, first round, Court 6, first match (from 7pm AEST)
De Minaur begins his seventh Roland Garros campaign determined to build on a 2-6 win-loss record at the tournament. The 24-year-old Aussie has only progressed beyond the first round twice – in 2019 and 2021. His first-round opponent, the 29-year-old Ivaskha, scored his maiden main-draw win in Paris last year. De Minaur can take extra confidence from an unbeaten record against the world No.73, who he last beat during a title-winning run at Atlanta last year.
Head-to-head record: De Minaur leads 2-0
Last meeting: De Minaur won 5-7 6-2 6-2 (Atlanta, July 2022)
Chris O’Connell (AUS) v Taro Daniel (JPN)
Men’s singles, first round, Court 4, second match
O’Connell arrives in Paris at a career-high ranking of world No.77 following an outstanding clay-court season. The 28-year-old from Sydney reached three ATP-level quarterfinals, scored three top-50 wins and amassed 11 wins in total on clay in the past two months. The quiet-achieving O’Connell, who is making his third main-draw appearance at Roland Garros and seeking a first victory, will look to continue this impressive momentum against Daniel, a 30-year-old Japanese player ranked No.112.
Head-to-head record: First meeting
Alexei Popyrin (AUS) v [Q] Aslan Karatsev
Men’s singles, first round, Court 8, second match
Popyrin has happy memories in Paris, where in 2017 he became the first Australian in 49 years to win a Roland Garros boys’ singles title. The 23-year-old is in good form too, having recently made a fourth-round run in Rome. The world No.85’s first-round opponent is also in red-hot form. Karatsev has won 13 of his past 15 matches, helping the 29-year-old skyrocket from outside the world’s top 120 to world No.62. The former world No.14 is recapturing the form that helped him reach the AO 2021 semifinals.
Head-to-head record: Karatsev leads 1-0
Last meeting: Karatsev won 6-3 6-3 (Nur-Sultan, October 2020)
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