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Happy in Halle: Duckworth’s hot streak on grass continues | 19 June, 2024 | All News | News and Features | News and Events

Happy in Halle: Duckworth’s hot streak on grass continues | 19 June, 2024 | All News | News and Features | News and Events

James Duckworth moves into the second round of the ATP 500 event in Halle, while Alex de Minaur suffers a tight three-set loss at Queen’s in London.

Halle, Germany, 19 June 2024 | Rhys de Deugd

Halle, Germany

After scoring a place in the main draw with back-to-back top-100 wins in qualifying, James Duckworth has continued his strong run of form with an opening-round win at the Halle Open in Germany.

Duckworth was commanding on serve against Brazilian rising star Joao Fonseca, with the Australian not dropping a single service game on his way to a 6-4 6-4 victory.

Winning over 72 percent of his total points on serve and blasting eight aces for the match, Duckworth claims his eighth main-draw win on the ATP Tour this season.

The German grass courts are proving to be a happy hunting ground for Duckworth, who is making his Halle debut. He has now won seven of his past eight matches, the best eight-match stretch of his career outside of Challenger and ITF events.

The 32-year-old made a big rise back into the world’s top 100 this week after his stunning run to the quarterfinals in Stuttgart, where he caused one of the upsets of the year against No.2 seed Ben Shelton.

Hoping to continue his purple patch, Duckworth will have another big challenge in the round of 16, as he faces world No.9 Hubert Hurkacz for a chance to compete in his fourth tour-level quarterfinal of the year.

Aussies in action – Halle

Men’s singles, first round
[Q] James Duckworth (AUS) d [WC] Joao Fonseca (BRA) 6-4 6-4
[7] Alexander Bublik (KAZ) d [Q] Max Purcell (AUS) 7-6(1) 6-4

Men’s singles, second round
[Q] James Duckworth (AUS) v [5] Hubert Hurkacz (POL)

Queen’s Club, Great Britain

Alex de Minaur’s undefeated grass-court season ended with a tight three-set loss to world No.30 Lorenzo Musetti at the Queen’s Club in London.

The top-ranked Australian started where he left off from his title in ‘s-Hertogenbosch last week, with four breaks of serve in the opening set, before Musetti fought back to claim a 1-6 6-4 6-2 victory.

Despite the narrow loss at the ATP 500 tournament, De Minaur has an optimistic view as he considers the bigger picture.

“I would have loved that to go my way because I’ve got a lot of confidence and momentum going my way,” last year’s Queen’s finalist said.

“But it just didn’t, and hey, it’s just another tennis match.”

After reaching a career-high ranking of world No.7 this week, De…

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