Sportstennis

Australia: João Sousa meets Pella and Pedro Sousa faces Di Minaur

Portuguese tennis player João Sousa will face Argentine Guido Pella in the opening round of the Australian Open, the first Grand Slam tournament of the season, while Pedro Sousa will make his debut against Australia’s Alex Di Minaur.

The draw held today in Melbourne dictated that the vimaranense, 44th place in the world ranking will discuss, in the seventh consecutive presence in Melbourne, the passage to the second round with his partner of the pair (66), next to who reached the quarter-finals in Auckland in the late morning.

The winner of what will be the second straight showdown between them, with the South American lefthander taking the best in the opening day of Roland Garros in 2018, will take on forces later with Philipp Kohlschreiber (Germany) or Zhe Li (China).

While João Sousa, 29, has the best third-round record achieved in 2015 and 2016, Pedro Sousa will make his debut in the main frame of a Grand Slam tournament against Australian number one Alex di Minaur.

At 30, Lisbon ranked 103rd in the world rankings and never faced the 19-year-old 29th-ranked runner-up who reached the second round at the Australian Open in 2017.

Among the top favorites, the draw drew the meeting between world number one Novak Djokovic and a qualifier, while Spanish Rafael Nadal (2nd) will play against Australian James Duckworth (238th) and Swiss Roger Federer (3rd) against Russian Denis Istomin (99th).

In the women’s competition, WTA leader Romanian Simone Halep will have as opponents in the opening round Kaia Kanepi (Estonia) and Serena Williams, seven-time Australian Open champion, will play against the German Tatjana Maria.

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