Australian Open Week 1 2023 Winners Losers originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
The 2023 Australian Open was unpredictable, to say the least, and there’s plenty more tennis action to come.
The Americans lifted the men’s group with four spots secured in Week 2 with Tommy Paul, Blake Shelton, JJ Wolf and Sebastian Korda.
There were also a handful of surprises at Melbourne Park No. 2 Ons Jabeur and No. 6 Maria Sakkari eliminated on the women’s side and #1 Rafael Nadal and No. 2 Casper Ruud out on the men’s side.
In addition to iconic victories and disappointing defeats, the number of players growing hurt keeps growing.
With the Australian Open 2023 really up for grabs, here are the Week 1 winners and losers:
Winner: Donna Vekic (CRO)
The 26-year-old Croatian got off to a great start with victories over Russia’s Oksana Selekhmeteva and Liudmila Samsonova, followed by Spain’s Nuria Parrizas-Diaz. Vekić meets Czech Linda Fruhvirtova for a spot in the quarterfinals.
Winner: Coco Gauff (USA)
The 18-year-old American sensation competes in both singles and doubles in Week 2. In singles, she defeated Czech Kateřina Siniaková, England’s Emma Raducanu and American Bernarda Pera to find her way to the fourth round. Next, Gauff meets the resolute number 17 of Latvian Jelena Ostapenko.
Winner: Elena Rybakina (KAZ)
The 23-year-old Kazakhstan enters the second week in both singles and doubles. She grabbed an impressive win over 2022 Australian Open runner-up American Danielle Collins to secure a place in the fourth round. Before winning, she defeated Italy’s Elisabetta Cocciaretto and Slovenia’s Kaja Juvan. Rybakina has a tough time against Poland’s No. 1 Iga Swiatek in the next round.
Winner: Lin Zhu (CHN)
The 28-year-old Chinese scored an impressive win over No. 6 Maria Sakkari of Greece to find herself into Week 2. Before the surprise, she beat Canadian Rebecca Marino and Swiss Jil Teichmann. Zhu meets Belarusian star Victoria Azarenka in the fourth round.
Loser: Danielle Collins (USA)
The 29-year-old American lost in the third round to Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan after defeating Russia’s Anna Kalinskaya and Czech Karolína Muchová in the first two rounds. The 2022 Australian Open runner-up will see a rank drop after the tournament because she didn’t defends their points from last year.
Loser: Maria Sakkari (GRC)
The 27-year-old Greek lost to China’s Lin Zhu in the third round despite being No. 6 in the tournament. Before losing, she defeated China’s Yue Yuan and Russia’s Diana Shnaider.
Loser: Daria Kasatkina (RUS)
The 25-year-old Russian had a disappointing tournament, dropping out in the first round to her compatriot Varvara Gracheva as the No. 9 seed.
Loser: Ons Jabeur (TUN)
The 28-year-old Tunisian lost to Czech Markéta Vondroušová in the second round after beating Slovenia’s Tamara Zidanšek. Jabeur was No. 2 after finishing runner-up at the 2022 US Open.
Winner: Tommy Paul (USA)
The 25-year-old American goes into week two with impressive wins over Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff, Spain’s Alejandro Davidovich Fokina and his compatriot Jenson Brooksby. He goes into the next round against the Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut.
Winner: Ben Shelton (USA)
The 20-year-old American had never won a Grand Slam match before this year and is in the fourth round of the Australian Open with victories over China’s Zhang Zhizhen, Chile’s Nicolás Jarry and Australia’s wildcard Alexei Popyrin. In week 2 he meets the American JJ Wolf.
Winner: JJ Wolf (USA)
The 24-year-old American is in his first fourth round of a Grand Slam after beating Australia’s Jordan Thompson, Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman and America’s Michael Mmoh. In Week 2, Wolf will face fellow countryman Ben Shelton for a place in the Quarterfinals.
Winner: Sebastian Korda (USA)
The 22-year-old American scored a massive win over No. 7 Russian Daniil Medvedev to secure a Week 2 spot. In the previous rounds, Korda faced Cristian Garín from Chile and Yosuke Watanuki from Japan. Korda meets Poland No. 10 Hubert Hurkacz for a spot in the quarterfinals.
Loser: Rafael Nadal (ESP)
It seems odd to have the word ‘loser’ next to Nadal’s name, but fans had high hopes for the 36-year-old Spaniard who lost to American Mackenzie McDonald in the second round. In the first round, the 22-time Grand Slam singles champion defeated Englishman Jack Draper.
Loser: Casper Ruud (NOR)
The 24-year-old Norwegian could have become the new world No. 1 if he had won the Australian Open but instead fell to American Jenson Brooksby in the second round. In the first round, the 2022 French Open and US Open finalist beat Czech Tomas Machac.
Loser: Daniil Medvedev (RUS)
The 26-year-old Russian was a finalist at the 2021 and 2022 Australian Opens but lost in the third round to American Sebastian Korda in 2023. In the first two rounds, the No. 7 seed strand beat American Marcus Giron and Australian John Millman.
Loser: Taylor Fritz (USA)
The 25-year-old American lost to Australian favorite Alexei Popyrin in the second round. In the first round, No. 8 seed Fritz defeated Nikoloz Basilashvili of Georgia.