Australian star Thanasi Kokkinakis has burst into tears in court after his first victory at the Australian Open since 2015

Kokkinaki’s career has been ravaged by injuries since he entered the top 100 six years ago His current rank of 267 is the lowest since 2017

In his last appearance in Melbourne in 2019, he had to withdraw injured before missing the tournament overall last year His return, however, was marked with a 6-4 6-1 6-1 demolition job from the first-round opponent Kwon Soon-woo

The 24-year-old’s victory was received with enthusiastic applause on Court 3, and Kokkinakis was overwhelmed with emotion after he sat down and drenched at the moment

“At 5-0 (in the third set) I didn’t want to think about the finish line, of course, but I thought about it,” he said

“I felt that massive roar and cheer from the crowd and was just starting to tear apart

“There is so much to do behind the scenes that not many people recognize it but my team, friends and family”

Kokkinakis’ ecstasy was a stark contrast to the agony of fellow countryman Jordan Thompson after he was forced to retreat injured in his own first-round encounter

After a sensational opening tournament last week, Thompson had to face his opponent, the Norwegian 24th in the third set Seed Casper Ruud, withdraw and led with 6-3 6-3 2-1

It was a bitterly disappointing result for the 26-year-old, who wanted to build on a fourth-round appearance at the US Open last year

“It’s an unfortunate end to start the year with your home Grand Slam,” Australian tennis star Mark Philippoussis said of Nine’s coverage

“Obviously he must feel very uncomfortable when in great pain because he usually struggles to the last point

“Ruud is a very tough player but it’s someone he has beaten in the past and the last time they played it was a five-setter”

By the second round, Kokkinakis’ task of moving forward becomes exponentially more difficult with a match against Greek fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas

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World news – AU – Kokkinakis emotionally after six years of drought