Australian Open torn to shreds after John Millman wildcard travesty

Not like this. Not like this.

Australian Open officials continue to be torched by tennis commentators after John Millman’s career ended in miserable fashion during qualifying on Thursday.

The 34-year-old said farewell after a straight sets loss to world No. 118 Alex Molcan in the second round of qualifying — two wins away from a spot in the main draw of 128 players.

Plenty of commentators have voiced their fury that Millman was forced to scrap through qualifiers in order to have one final crack in the main draw — having last year announced his intent to retire after the 2024 Aussie Open.

Millman was snubbed from a wildcard into the main draw with Tennis Australia giving preference to James Duckworth, Marc Polmans, Adam Walton, Jason Kubler and James McCabe as the local recipients.

The former world No. 33 was typically classy in his final on-court interview — but fans have said it all for him in slamming those responsible for the decision.

After a career that stretched more than 15 years, it is clear fans are not happy about how it has ended for the Queenslander.

One fan on X, formerly known as Twitter, described the wildcard snub as “comically pathetic”.

Another posted: “They couldn’t give John Millman a main draw wild card at the Australian Open in the last event of his career? Lol that is comically pathetic”.

One fan posted: “No wild card for Millman’s last tournament?!? That’s so disrespectful. The guy deserved a WC”.

Another posted: “For my piece of this drama: John Millman should never be playing qualies in his last career event. We have such short memories. Travesty”.

Millman acknowledged the hard road he’d taken throughout his career when he spoke after the loss.

“It might not seem like much to bow out in qualifying, but it means a lot,” Millman said.

“I was never the biggest guy or the biggest hitter. I needed every bit of energy and they (supporters) came in their droves always, even in qualifying.

“I had a lot of people who didn’t think I’d eventuate to much, I stuck at it.

“The ones who did think I would are probably all over there (in the player box).”

Given Millman’s contribution to Australian tennis, some were left miffed as to why the cult hero didn’t receive a wildcard at his home slam in what was his final tournament.

It wasn’t the only wildcard omission to ruffle feathers, with Australia’s top ranked woman, Arina Rodionova, also overlooked.

Rodionova lost in the opening round of qualifying and took aim at Tennis Australia in the aftermath.

“The only regret I have from today is I think I gave Tennis Australia something to celebrate … I think they’re very pleased with my result today, and that’s what makes me upset,” she said.

“I did everything I could to possibly deserve (a wildcard) … absolutely (it feels personal). It started years and years ago, and there were so many incidents that happened between myself and people in charge.

“It is very clear to me that I am not liked, and it’s not just clear to me, it’s clear to every single Australian tennis player.”

Millman announced in November he would retire at the end of the summer after succumbing to persistent injuries in his final years on the tour.

“The body’s really broken down. It’s been a fantastic career, but I’m ready to try something else,” he said.

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