Spectators at the Melbourne Sports & Aquatic Centre will have three local heroes to support in the second round of the Australian Open, PSA M15 tournament after home players Zac Alexander, Rohan Toole and Rhys Dowling all advanced past the opening round.
Alexander has won his last seven PSA World Tour events and had an unbeaten run of 30 matches coming into his first round fixture with India’s Sandeep Ramachandran, a streak that stretches back over a year to a second round defeat at the 2015 instalment of this tournament.
The World No.80’s stunning form showed no signs of abating against Ramachandran and a devastating display saw him take an 11-5, 11-7, 11-7 victory to set up a difficult tie against title favourite Paul Coll in the next round, with Coll dropping just five points during a comfortable 3-0 win over wildcard Thomas Calvert.
Meanwhile, Toole followed up his qualifying stage victory over Jordan Till by coming out on top of another all-Australian encounter with David Clegg. Toole lies 41 places below Clegg in the World Rankings, but produced a measured, composed display to take the win in straight games. He will play Reiko Peter in round two after Peter dispatched South Korea’s Ko Youngjo.
Dowling is the other Australian to progress to the second round due to his opponent, Rex Hedrick, withdrawing because of a hamstring injury and he will meet New Zealand’s Ben Grindrod, who saw off Mithran Selvaratnam, for a place in the quarter-final.
Second seed Campbell Grayson is also through to round two thanks to a 3-0 victory against Switzerland’s Dimitri Steinmann and he is set to face India’s Ravi Dixit after he came from behind to defeat Patrick Miescher in a brutal 80-minute clash.
Results – First Round: Australian Open 2016
 Paul Coll (NZL) bt [WC] Thomas Calvert (AUS) 3-0: 11-1, 11-3, 11-1 (22m)
 Zac Alexander (AUS) bt [Q] Sandeep Ramachandran (IND) 3-0: 11-5, 11-7, 11-7 (32m)
Kush Kumar (IND) bt [Q] Nathan Turnbull (AUS) 3-1: 11-7, 4-11, 11-5, 11-8 (31m)
 Joel Makin (WAL) bt [Q] Vincent Droesbeke (FRA) 3-0: 11-4, 12-10, 11-5 (40m)
 Harinder Pal Singh Sandhu (IND) bt Elvinn Keo (MAS) 3-0: 11-5, 11-4, 12-10 (34m)
Evan Williams (NZL) bt [Q] Joel Luca (AUS) 3-0: 11-2, 11-2, 11-6 (21m)
Mohd Syafiq Kamal (MAS) bt [Q] Jong Myoung Park (KOR) 3-1: 11-7, 5-11, 11-9, 11-7 (40m)
 Abdulla Mohd Al Tamimi (QAT) bt [Q] Daehoon Jeong (KOR) 3-0: 11-6, 11-8, 11-7 (28m)
 Joe Lee (ENG) bt Lance Beddoes (NZL) 3-0: 14-12, 11-6, 11-5 (37m)
Arthur Gaskin (IRL) bt [Q] Connor Sheen (ENG) 3-0: 11-9, 11-7, 11-4 (32m)
Ben Grindrod (NZL) bt Mithran Selvaratnam (MAS) 3-2: 9-11, 11-5, 11-7, 10-12, 11-9 (59m)
Rhys Dowling (AUS) w/o
 Reiko Peter (SUI) bt Ko Youngjo (KOR) 3-1: 11-6, 9-11, 11-0, 11-8 (43m)
[Q] Rohan Toole (AUS) bt David Clegg (AUS) 3-0: 11-9, 11-8, 11-9 (33m)
Ravi Dixit (IND) bt Patrick Miescher (SUI) 3-2: 8-11, 11-13, 11-8, 13-11, 12-10 (80m)
 Campbell Grayson (NZL) bt Dimitri Steinmann (SUI) 3-0: 11-5, 11-2, 11-8 (31m)
Draw – Second Round
 Paul Coll (NZL) v  Zac Alexander (AUS)
Kush Kumari (IND) v  Joel Makin (WAL)
 Harinder Pal Singh Sandhu (IND) v Evan Williams (NZL)
Mohd Syafiq Kamal (MAS) v  Abdulla Mohd Al Tamimi (QAT)
 Joe Lee (ENG) v Arthur Gaskin (IRL)
Ben Grindrod (NZL) v Rhys Dowling (AUS)
 Reiko Peter (SUI) v [Q] Rohan Toole (AUS)
Ravi Dixit (IND) v  Campbell Grayson (NZL)