The Latest: COVID-19 positive player loses in Australia

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — The Latest from the Australian Open on Tuesday (all times local):

2:10 p.m.

Paula Badosa has lost her first-round match at the Australian Open after going through a three-week quarantine because she tested positive for COVID-19.

The 23-year-old from Spain, who is ranked 70th, served for the match but dropped the last four games and was beaten 6-7 (4), 7-6 (4), 7-5 across more than 2 1/2 hours by Russian qualifier Liudmila Samsonova.

Badosa already was in a hard quarantine — not allowed to leave her hotel room in Melbourne — after potentially being exposed to the coronavirus on an Australian Open charter flight. But then she tested positive for the illness on her seventh day in lockdown, and so needed to isolate for another two weeks.

She was allowed to play in the tournament after testing negative.

Badosa was born in New York but lives and trains in Barcelona and reached the French Open’s fourth round last year.

She led 5-3 in the third set Tuesday but faltered against Samsonova, a 22-year-old from Russia who is ranked 130th and entered the day 0-4 in Grand Slam tournaments.


2 p.m.

Rising star Andrey Rublev of Russia has won his opening match at the Australian Open, beating Yannick Hanfmann of Germany 6-3, 6-3, 6-4.

Rublev won five tour-level titles last year, the most of any player, and his ranking is a career-high No. 8. At 23 he’s a three-time Grand Slam quarterfinalist who had his best showing in Melbourne last year, when he reached the round of 16.

Rublev hit 17 aces against Hanfmann and overcame an early break, holding serve the rest of the way.


12:45 p.m.

Sofia Kenin’s Australian Open title defense got off to a bit of a rocky start before she righted herself and pulled out a two-set win.

The 22-year-old American trailed by an early break and took about 45 minutes to actually wrest some semblance of control before eventually beating 133rd-ranked Australian wild-card entry Maddison Inglis 7-5, 6-4.

Inglis never has won a tour-level match, falling to 0-6.

But she did not make things easy on Kenin, who nevertheless managed to avoid becoming the first woman since Jennifer Capriati in 2003 to lose in the first round at the Australian Open a year after winning the championship.

“First round, it’s obviously nerves for me,” said Kenin, who followed up her first major title last year by reaching the final at the French Open.

Kenin acknowledged with a chuckle that she was “not too happy with the way I played” but added: “A win is a win.”


12:30 p.m.

Garbiñe Muguruza has won her opening match at the Australian Open, where she reached the final last year before losing to American Sofia Kenin.

Muguruza, a Spaniard seeded 14th, beat Margarita Gasparyan of Russia, 6-4, 6-0.

Muguruza improved to 9-0 in first-round matches at Melbourne Park. The two-time Grand Slam champion lost only 11 points in the second set.


12:20 p.m.

Ann Li’s off to quite a start to 2021, moving into the second round of the Australian Open with a 6-2, 6-0 victory over No. 31 seed Zhang Shuai.

Li is a 20-year-old American who is ranked 69th and competing in only her third career Grand Slam tournament.

She needed just 47 minutes to win and improve to 5-0 this season.

Li is coming off an unusual accomplishment at a tuneup tournament at Melbourne Park last week: She shared the title of the Grampians Trophy with Anett Kontaveit because organizers decided not to hold a final so as not to wear out the players right before the Australian Open.

That warmup event was created for players such as Li who had to go into a hard lockdown after potentially being exposed to COVID-19. They were not allowed out of their hotel rooms for practice — or any other reason — during a two-week quarantine upon arrival in Australia.


11 a.m.

Sofia Kenin begins defense of her Australian Open title when she takes on Australian Maddison Inglis to begin play at Rod Laver Arena. Kenin beat Garbiñe Muguruza in the final last year in three sets for her first Grand Slam singles title. Muguruza will be in action at the same time, kicking things off at Margaret Court Arena in a match against Margarita Gasparyan.

Rafael Nadal plays the final day match at Rod Laver Arena against Laslo Djere. This is Nadal’s first chance to grab sole possession of the men’s mark for most Grand Slam singles titles. He pulled even with Roger Federer at 20 by winning the French Open in October, beating Novak Djokovic in a lopsided final. Federer is still sidelined after two knee operations and is not playing here.


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