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Dublin: 20 °C Sunday 25 August, 2019
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Niland off the mark at US Open qualifiers

Limerick man won his first round qualifier at Flushing Meadows 6-1 6-4.

Niland acknowledges his support following the defeat against Mannarino in Wimbledon in June.
Niland acknowledges his support following the defeat against Mannarino in Wimbledon in June.
Image: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire/Press Association Images

IT’S ONLY TWO months since Conor Niland’s unforgettable Wimbledon odyssey came to an end against Adrian Mannarino, but the Limerick man looks ready to do it all again at the year’s final Grand Slam — the US Open at Flushing Meadows.

The Limerick man, who has dropped from 185th in the world to 199th since his SW19 exploits, won the first of three qualification matches in New York yesterday, beating Pavol Cervenak of Slovakia 6-1 6-4.

Niland took just an hour and two minutes to progress on Court 15, racing into the lead with two breaks of his 24-year-old opponent’s serve in the first set.

Cervenak, ranked 238th, held his own in the second set without ever really threatening Niland, who now progresses to a second round qualifier against Tsung-Hua Yang of Taipei.

The 20-year-old had a surprise win yesterday when he upset the seeded South African Izak Van Der Merwe in straight sets 6-2 6-1.

Dublin-based Vitalia Diatchenko, who has been seeded 24th in the women’s qualification draw, opens her US Open campaign this afternoon when she takes on Laura Siegemund of Germany at 16:00 BST.

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Niall Kelly

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