Thanasi Kokkinakis seeks fresh Melbourne start

Thanasi Kokkinakis is ready to make a fresh start at the first Major of the season after skipping the entire 2020 season due to illness, not playing since Tiburon Challenger in September 2019.

The Adelaide lost the Australian Open junior final to Nick Kyrgios in 2013, making the senior debut 12 months later and losing to Rafael Nadal in the second round. Kokkinakis reached the third round at Roland Garros 2015, making significant steps towards the stop but starting to struggle with injuries soon after. Thanasi underwent right shoulder surgery at the end of the season, staying away from the court until May 2017 and dealing with an abdominal strain that made his comeback even more difficult.

Following a slow return that spring, Kokkinakis reached the first ATP final in Los Cabos in August, unable to remain healthy after that and dropping out from the top-200 ahead of the new season. Motivated to leave injuries and a dark period behind him, Thanasi defeated Roger Federer in Miami 2018 to become the lowest-ranked player who toppled the world no. 1 in 15 years, winning two more Challenger titles by the end of the year.

In 2019, Kokkinakis retired at the Australian Open and played a couple of tournaments in the rest of the year, reaching the Tiburon Challenger final in September and not playing ever since. Thanasi had to skip the entire 2020 due to glandular fever, leaving setbacks behind him and feeling ready to compete again at the Australian Open in February after earning the main draw wild card.

"I'm super happy and thankful to have gotten the Australian Open wild card. I was shattered for not being able to compete this year due to illness, but I'm feeling great now and can't wait to get out in front of the home crowd and have some fun," Thanasi Kokkinakis said.

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ATP Australian Open

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