Thompson makes it four Aussies in last 16 in Houston


Jordan Thompson has ensured Australia has four players among the last 16 at the US Men's Clay Court Championship in Houston, Texas.

Sixth seed Thompson proved too strong for China's Yibing Wu in their first-round clash under lights on Tuesday night, winning 6-4 6-4, and will next face Aleksandar Kovacevic of the US.

World No.33 Thompson joined James Duckworth, Rinky Hijikata and eighth seed Max Purcell in the round of 16, while fellow Australian Thanasi Kokkinakis missed out after a titanic struggle with Kovacevic.

Kokkinakis fought for three hours and 16 minutes before succumbing to the American 7-6 (7-3) 6-7 (2-7) 6-4.

Purcell ousted Next Gen ATP Finals competitor Alex Michelsen 7-5 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 to set up a clash with yet another American, wildcard Michael Mmoh.

Duckworth accounted for Dutchman Gijs Brouwer, a 2023 semi-finalist at this event, 6-3 6-3 and next faces a stern test against third seed Frances Tiafoe.

Hijikata advanced a day earlier, beating Chris Eubanks in his first-ever match on clay at ATP Tour level.

He next faces American Brandon Nakashima.