Philippoussis given Queen's wildcard - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Philippoussis given Queen's wildcard

By Paul Mulvey 19/05/2005 06:07:43 PM Comments (0)

Former champion Mark Philippoussis has been given a wildcard for the Queen's Club tournament in London next month as he bids to drag himself away from a ranking nearing 200.

The entry for the major warm up event for Wimbledon has given Philippoussis a leg up in a career which has plummeted from a world ranking of nine to 185 in a little over 16 months.

The Australian is also expected to ask for a wildcard for Wimbledon which starts on June 20.

As a finalist at the All England Club in 2003, he is certain to be given direct entry when officials meet to discuss wildcards on June 6.

The former world No.8 and two-time grand slam finalist must now rely on handouts to gain entry into the top tournaments otherwise he faces the humiliating task of going through qualifying rounds.

Philippoussis, 28, rejected the offer of a wildcard from the French Open which starts in Paris next week to focus on reigniting his career on his favoured grass at Queen's which starts on June 6.

Organisers of the west London tournament had no hesitation in granting the first of their five wildcards to the 1997 champion.

Philippoussis's woeful form last year in which he won 11 matches and lost 19, including 13 in the first round, has been compounded by injury this year.

He pulled out of the Australian Open in January because of a torn adductor muscle and hasn't played since injuring his left ankle in Miami in March during his first round win over Christophe Rochus.

Although he likes the grass at Queen's, the Victorian's slump last year hit its lowest point there when he lost to world No.866 Ian Flanagan in the first round.

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