MELBOURNE: Exciting French teenager Richard Gasquet was yesterday confirmed as a starter in next week’s Kooyong Classic here, organisers said.
Gasquet, 16, was the top-ranked junior in the world last year after winning junior titles at the French and US Opens.
Gasquet’s call-up comes after organisers missed out on Pete Sampras, Tim Henman and Tommy Haas playing in the eight-man exhibition event ahead of the year’s first Grand Slam, the Jan 13-26 Australian Open.
As players were committed to other events – including the Sydney International and Auckland’s Heineken Open – organisers were forced to look further afield for competitors.
Kooyong organiser Colin Stubs spotted Gasquet playing qualifiers for the Australian Hardcourt Championships in Adelaide and described him as “by far the most talented and exciting young player I have seen for some time”. – AFP