After years of injury frustration, Jason Kubler arrives in the Australian Open main draw in career-best form – and with a deep appreciation for the opportunity.
Jason Kubler is making up for lost time, enjoying his best performances at age 29 after many frustrating years plagued by injury.
Earning a wildcard into Australian Open 2023 is a fitting reward for the Queenslander, who is coming off a career-best season, and launched his year with impressive runs at the United Cup and Adelaide International.
Wins over world No.27 Daniel Evans (after trailing 5-0 in the second set), and Albert Ramos-Vinolas (ranked 39) at the United Cup helped catapult his own ranking to a career-high No.86.
He backed that up with success in Adelaide, defeating another higher ranked opponent in Argentina’s Tomas Martin Etcheverry.
Kubler last appeared at the Australian Open in 2019, with a combination of factors – including injury – keeping him out of the next 12 majors.
The popular player has defied persistent setbacks to reach a fourth consecutive Grand Slam main draw.
He won matches at both Roland Garros and the US Open last year either side of a brilliant run to the fourth round at Wimbledon.
In typically humble fashion, Kubler thanked Nick Kyrgios over text for giving him the opportunity to play in the recent United Cup, after Kyrgios withdrew from the event the week before.
“I actually messaged him after my match against Evo, [Evans]” Kubler said during the tournament. “I messaged him: ‘thank you so much for the opportunity’. Basically, I hope his body gets better, and we can have a hit before the Australian Open.
“That’s the way I see it. He could have played, and he could have done unbelievably well, like I know we all think he can.
“Fortunately, he gave me the opportunity to play, and I have sort of taken it with both hands and run with it.”
Cue the highlight reel 🎬
— United Cup (@UnitedCupTennis) January 3, 2023
Reflecting on his team experience, Kubler spoke about the growth in his game and his relationships.
“Unbelievable. For me to have two of my best wins here in Australia is really special. But also, off the court it’s been special.
“I got to hang out with all the Australians. Got to get even closer with some of the people I didn’t know as well….