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Major boost for Aussie assault

- LEO SCHLINK LONDON

AUSTRALIA’s Wimbledon contingent could be boosted significan­tly with a string of qualifying entrants signing on to push for main draw spots.

With 13 players already assured spots in the field for Monday’s start, five men have entered qualifying with several women expected to follow suit.

Luke Saville, Ben Mitchell, John-Patrick Smith, Jason Kubler and John Millman were due last night to start in qualifying. Former Wimbledon junior champion Saville faces Chilean Nicolas Jarry, while Mitchell takes on Frenchman Remi Boutillier as Smith plays Belgian Maxime Authom

Claycourt specialist Kubler takes on Rui Machado, of Portugal, leaving fellow Queensland­er Millman to deal with Swede Christian Lindell.

Australia has eight men and five women securely in the main draw. Bernard Tomic and Nick Kyrgios will be seeded, Thanasi Kokkinakis, James Duckworth, Marinko Matosevic and Sam Groth are direct acceptance­s and Lleyton Hewitt and Matt Ebden have wildcards.

Ebden, who lost the final of the Ilkley Challenger, has risen to No.147 after falling to almost 400th because of injury.

Sam Stosur will be seeded and will be joined in the main draw by Casey Dellacqua, Jarmila Gajdosova, Ajla Tomljanovi­c and Daria Gavrilova.

Dellacqua opened impressive­ly at the Aegon Internatio­nal at Eastbourne with a 6-2, 6-4 whipping of Slovakian Anna Karolina Schmiedlov­a as Gajdosova enjoyed a fine 6-4, 6-1 qualifying win at Eastbourne over German Tatjana Maria.

 ??  ?? IN FORM: Andy Murray on his way to victory at Queen's Club and, inset, Roger Federer after winning the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, Germany.
IN FORM: Andy Murray on his way to victory at Queen's Club and, inset, Roger Federer after winning the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, Germany.

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