Top ranked Indian men’s singles player Pranjesh Gunneswaran’s quest for a fifth straight Grand Slam appearance received a boost after the 30-year-old got a relatively easy opener in the Australian Open qualifying round, the draw for which was announced on Monday.
Prajnesh will open his campaign against Australian wildcard Harry Bourchier, who is ranked 286th in the world. Among the other Indians in the men’s singles fray, Sumit Nagal will face Egypt’s journeyman Mohamed Safwat while Ramkumar Ramanathan meets 15th seed Federico Coria of Argentina.
Sumit, who won a set against Roger Federer in the US Open opening round last year, is looking to make it to her second straight Grand Slam main draw while Ramkumar hasn’t yet made his Major debut.
In women’s singles, Ankita Raina will meet Bulgaria’s Viktoriya Tomova. There is not much to choose between the two players in terms of ranking as the Indian is ranked 185th while her opponent is 25 places above her in WTA rankings. None of the players have faced off against each other in the past.