South African tennis player Lloyd Harris’ run of good recent form may have come to an abrupt halt – when he was beaten in the first round of the men’s singles at the Australian Open in Melbourne on Tuesday – but he leaves the tournament on a world ranking high of 72.
To be honest, he must have been exhausted. It’s been a hectic January for Harris with the ATP Cup – where he played for South Africa – in Brisbane; followed immediately by the ATP Tour in Adelaide – where he reached his first ATP Tour Final!! – and then straight into the Australian Open.
In a match that was rescheduled from Monday’s programme due to rain, the 22-year-old was unfortunately no match for Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman, the tournament’s 14th seed, who won in straight sets.
But although disappointing, Harris has seen his world ranking rise from 91 to 72!
Exhaustion and nerves may have got to him in Melbourne. Stats showed that he recorded 47 unforced errors in the 6-4, 6-2, 6-2 defeat. His opponent, in turn, made only 18 unforced errors in the 105 minute contest. The 1.70m Argentine, broke Harris’ serve six times and lost his own serve only once.
This was the first time in their careers that Schwartzman and Harris had played against one another.
Later today, in the final evening’s match out on court 22, Kevin Anderson is hoping for better fortunes than Harris and is a heavy favourite to progress to the second round. His opponent, Ilya Ivashka, of Belarus, is ranked No149 in the world and on the only previous occasion the pair have met, at the ATP Masters 1000 in Canada in 2018, Anderson won in straight sets.
Sources include: Team SA