Canada's Katherine Sebov qualifies for Australian Open main draw

MELBOURNE, Australia — Canada's Katherine Sebov has made it into the main draw of the Australian Open.

The Toronto native defeated Switzerland's Simona Waltert 6-3, 6-4 on Thursday in the final round of qualifying for the first Grand Slam event of the season.

Despite being edged out in aces (0-2) and winners (15-18), Sebov committed just two double faults to Waltert's six and had 35 unforced errors to her opponent's 48.

Sebov, 24, also won 69 per cent of first-serve points and broke on three of her eight opportunities.

She defeated Czechia's Linda Noskova and Australia's Priscilla Hon in the previous two qualifying rounds.

Sebov will join fellow Canadians Leylah Fernandez, Bianca Andreescu, and Rebecca Marino in the round of 64 which begins Jan. 16 for women's singles.

Sebov will play fourth seeded Carolina Garcia in her opening match, while Fernandez will take on Alize Cornet of France, Andreescu faces No. 25 Marie Bouzkova of the Czechia and Marino meets Lin Zhu of China.

In the men's draw, Montreal's Félix Auger-Aliassime, the tournament's six seed, battles Vernon, B.C.'s Vasek Pospisil in all-Canadian match to open the tournament. Auger-Aliassime and Pospisil were teammates on Canada's Davis Cup championship team in December.

Richmond Hill, Ont.'s Dennis Shapovalov, another Davis Cup team member, opens against Dusan Lajovic of Serbia. Shapovalov enters the tournament seeded 20th.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 12, 2023.

The Canadian Press