Destanee Aiava’s path back to the Australian Open after a series of mental health battles has taken a positive step forward with victory in the opening round of qualifying.
She was one of seven Aussies to successfully progress through on Monday, and another 14 Australians play their opening qualifying matches on Tuesday.
Given a wildcard into qualifying, Aiava, the world No.325, said she was keeping her expectations measured as she looked to earn a main-draw spot this week.
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The 22-year-old, who opened up on her mental health struggles during 2022, which included an attempt to end her life, carved out a 6-3 6-3 victory against Turkey’s Ipek Oz in first-round action at Melbourne Park on Monday.
“I’m so happy. It’s my first…