show me:

Aussies Gadecki and Sharma home in on French Open spots

3 minute read

Australians Olivia Gadecki and Astra Sharma have moved just one victory away from a coveted place in the French Open main draw.

ASTRA SHARMA. Picture: Julian Finney/Getty Images.

Olivia Gadecki and Astra Sharma will be out to double the Australian women's representation in the French Open main draw after setting up final qualifying matches at Roland Garros.

Amid a lean spell for the domestic women's game, only national No.1 Daria Saville has qualified directly through the rankings for Roland Garros.

Ajla Tomljanovic, battling back from injury, was also given a wildcard, thanks to the host French federation's reciprocal deal with Tennis Australia.

But in the cut-throat qualifying draw on the Roland Garros clay, rising star Gadecki and former WTA tournament winner Sharma both enjoyed their second wins of the week on Wednesday (Thursday AEST) to set up third-round "finals'.

Perth's Sharma, whose Charleston Open triumph in 2021 came on clay, will face Olga Danilovic, the Serbian 11th qualifying seed, on Thursday (Friday AEST), with the winner earning a place in the 128-player main draw.

It follows the 28-year-old's 6-3 6-4 victory over Hungarian veteran Timea Babos on Wednesday (Thursday AEST), as Sharma tries to qualify for her first grand slam in two years.

Gadecki, the 22-year-old Gold Coast prospect, later beat Argentine teenager Solana Sierra 6-2 6-4 to also move just a win away from her maiden French Open appearance.

Ranked No.165 in the world, Gadecki will play 21-year-old Julia Avdeeva, ranked No.188, on Friday (Saturday AEST), going into the match with positive vibes from how she beat the Russian in an ITF final in Turkey three years ago.

While Gadecki and Sharma were the only survivors from nine Australians who entered the women's qualifying, none of their men's counterparts got through, with Adelaide's Li Tu the last to depart in the second round on Wednesday, beaten by Kazakhstan's Mikhail Kukushkin 6-4 6-2.

The biggest international name to get knocked out was Austria's two-time finalist Dominic Thiem, who announced earlier in the month this Roland Garros quest would be his last because he'll be retiring at the end of the season following his struggles to get back to his best after a wrist injury.

Beaten 6-2 7-5 by Finland's Otto Virtanen on the Suzanne Lenglen showcourt, the 30-year-old former US Open champ received a standing ovation during a farewell ceremony amid chants of "Thank you Domi'.

Surprisingly denied a main-draw wildcard by organisers, the good-natured Thiem wasn't holding a grudge, telling the crowd: "I slowly built up a great, great relationship with the tournament, with all of you guys. I've really enjoyed every single year of it."

What’s gambling really costing you?

For free and confidential support call 1800 858 858 or visit