Looking back from earlier today on Day 2 of the 2024 Australian Open, there’s another Aussie in James Duckworth who also fought so hard but sadly fell short in the end to Frenchman Luca Van Assche at Court 6. He was able to get away with the opening set lead following the tiebreak before Duckworth lost his way on occasions. Although he almost got it after the third set, but Van Assche did not hold back until the very end with the win as his time at Melbourne Park was over that quickly despite putting up a great fight. The final score was 7-6 (7-2 tiebreak), 3-6, 6-3, 3-6 & 3-6.
As said, Duckworth has got the ball rolling alongside a great fight to stay in the game against his opponent who is so young at age 19. We wished we have seen the best of his 2nd half form after the third set which would have seen Duckworth win that match instead of the Frenchman & that’s where Van Assche has taken advantage of his weaknesses. And again it’s his inconsistency as well as his struggles to build on a good start that saw the writings of the wall here. Now he hopes to keep on learning and fighting against some of the current & next crop of world’s best players in the regular ATP Tour circuit every week – it’s something that got himself into the world’s Top 100 recently in the men’s singles rankings.
Meanwhile, well done to Van Assche with the win as he will now face a fellow youngster but with a bit more experience in 25th seed Italian Lorenzo Musetti on Wednesday. Love how he held Duckworth back all along before the Frenchman responded well to work his way through the field by hanging in there & he too has done it for the win after a long, five set showdown – how good was that! His best grand slam singles finish was the 2nd Round so far last year on home soil at Roland Garros & now he has reached the 2nd round for the second time here. He will need time to improve his game since the Frenchman didn’t have a great 2nd half run but Van Assche hopes to bring his long-form out that will test the minds of an emerging grand slam star in Musetti where he would love to become one himself by challenging for the top honours someday.