Nina Pantic reports from the 2016 Australian Open on second-week matches—and, in Down Under the Radar, aspects of the tournament that go beyond the court.
MELBOURNE, Australia—The number of matches begins to dwindle during the second week of a Slam, but not if you’re under 18. The junior event is just ramping up, and it’s here that future Grand Slam champions begin to make names for themselves.
One junior who’s already done that is Felix Auger-Aliassime. He shares a birthday with Roger Federer, but he was born 19 years later—yes, that’s right, in the year 2000. The 15-year-old hails from Quebec City, Canada and is considered one of the game’s top prospects.
Last year, Auger-Aliassime became the first player born in the 2000s to earn an ATP ranking (he’s now ranked No. 737), and the youngest player to ever win an ATP Challenger match (he reached the quarterfinals of Granby in July). He has backed it up with two Futures quarterfinal appearances since then.