Amir Weintraub progressed safely into the second round of the Wimbledon qualifiers on Monday with the first of three wins he will require to reach the main draw at the All England Club for the first time in his career.
Weintraub, ranked No. 224 in the world, advanced to the second round of the Australian Open in his first appearance in a major main draw earlier this year and made quick work of Canadian Peter Polansky (210) on Monday, racing to a 6-2, 6-3 victory.
Weintraub will next face Matt Reid (213) of Australia who survived a marathon third set on Monday, eventually outlasting Somdev Devvarman 7-6, 4-6, 18-16.
Dudi Sela, ranked No. 90 in the world and who was seeded No. 1 in the qualifiers, suffered a suprise defeat 6-4,6-7,6-2 to Stephane Robert (164) in the first round on Monday.
Sela, who reached the last 16 of Wimbledon in 2009, came within two points of recording his biggest win of the year before losing to Grigor Dimitrov (31) in the first round of the Queens grass tournament last week and was desperate to experience the main draw of a Grand Slam event once more after missing the French Open.
Israel will also have two representatives in the women’s qualifiers at Wimbledon, with Shahar Pe’er failing to receive direct entry to the main draw of a Grand Slam tournament for the first time since the Australian Open in 2005.
Pe’er made her Grand Slam main draw debut at Roland Garros in 2005 and has missed only one of 33 majors since, sitting out the French Open four years ago due to injury.
After seven years, Pe’er officially lost her status as the Israel No. 1 last week, being leap frogged by Julia Glushko, who will also play in the Wimbledon qualifiers.
Pe’er, who climbed three places to No. 168 on Monday, had been Israel’s top ranked women’s player since overtaking Anna Smashnova in 2006, peaking at No. 11 in January 2011.
Glushko reached a career-best ranking after coming through three rounds of qualifiers to reach the main draw at Roland Garros for the first time and climbed two more places to a new high of 129 on Monday.
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