Linda Pearce

Linda Pearce

Linda Pearce is the Chief Tennis Writer and general sports reporter for The Age. She writes about a range of sports, including football, netball, and gymnastics. Linda has twice been named Australian tennis writer of the year.

Bernard Tomic defeats Thanasi Kokkinakis at the Brisbane International

Linda Pearce In the clamour to hail Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis as the emerging saviours of Australian tennis, it can be easy to overlook a certain lead-footed controversy magnet who is still just 22.

Groth defeats Hewitt in straight sets in Brisbane International

Sam Groth pumps his fist after winning the first set against Lleyton Hewitt.

Linda Pearce Lleyton Hewitt's title defence at the Brisbane International ends after just one match.

Australia's future takes to the court

A fitter-looking Bernard Tomic believes a productive pre-season has improved his movement by 10-15 per cent.

Linda Pearce Brisbane: Whatever promotional spin Channel Seven puts on the all-Australian, thus irresistibly oi, oi, oi, Brisbane International duel between Bernard Tomic and Thanasi Kokkinakis, it could also be...

Kokkinakis, Duckworth and friends show there's more to Australian tennis than Kyrgios

Thanasi Kokkinakis signs autographs after a convincing win over  Julien Benneteau at the Brisbane International.

Linda Pearce It took James Duckworth all of 2014 to win one ATP-level match, but a single attempt in 2015 to claim another, through a fine 6-2, 6-2 defeat of sixth seed and world No.

The rise, and return, of Nick Kyrgios, Australia's No. 1

Getting ready to return: Nick Kyrgios.

Linda Pearce New Australian No.1 Nick Kyrgios has practised for the first time since injuring his back while preparing for the Hopman Cup, with Monday's 30 minutes to become an hour on Tuesday as he builds...

Nick Kyrgios' back injury improves

On the mend: Nick Kyrgios.

Linda Pearce Nick Kyrgios says his back injury is improving with treatment as he battles to be fit for the Australian Open.

Sam Stosur stunned in first round of Brisbane International

Sam Stosur plays a forehand in her first-round match against Varvara Lepchenko.

Linda Pearce Sam Stosur throws away a commanding lead to bow out of the Brisbane International.

Jelena Jankovic back for good, after fearing career's end

Jelena Jankovic

Linda Pearce During the two months late last year that Jelena Jankovic suffered through a painful back injury, she struggled to clean her teeth and put on her shoes, and was barely able to walk.

Ajla Tomljanovic now calls Australia home

Surprise upset: Australian resident Ajla Tomljanovic beat former world No.1 Jelena Jankovic in round one at the Brisbane International.

Linda Pearce Given that the Brisbane International is a WTA tour event rather than a grand slam, Ajla Tomljanovic is representing her birth nation (Croatia), rather than her recently adopted country (Australia).

Roger Federer remains confident going into Brisbane International

Roger Federer takes part in a practice session ahead of the Brisbane International tennis tournament at the Patrick Rafter Arena in Brisbane on Saturday.

Linda Pearce Having seen the winds of change blowing through men's tennis, with two new grand slam champions crowned in 2014, a resolute Roger Federer has returned to Brisbane to start a new season he hopes will...

Sam Groth: nice guy with monster serve

Dangerous: Sam Groth will threaten top players.

Linda Pearce A little while ago, when Sam Groth was just a nice guy with a monster serve and a questionable approach to fitness and discipline, he was aware that his opponents' Plan A was rarely more complicated...

Simona Halep wins matches and self-belief

Simona Halep in action against Agnieszka Radwanska.

Linda Pearce Ask Simona Halep whether even this time last year, much less 12 months before that, she could have imagined she would be among the top four seeds at the 2015 Australian Open, and the answer is...

Jordan Thompson wins Australian Open wildcard after five-set ordeal

See you in Melbourne: Jordan Thompson will play the 2015 Australian Open.

Linda Pearce A golf cart collected Jordan Thompson from courtside after his epic Australian Open wildcard win, and delivered the debilitated back-to-back playoff champion to an ice bath.

Daria Gavrilova wins Australian Open wildcard

Relief: Daria Gavrilova after winning a wildcard berth for January's Australian Open.

Linda Pearce Daria Gavrilova was on crutches 12 months ago lamenting her misfortune, as she watched her boyfriend Luke Saville and housemate Storm Sanders contest an Australian Open wildcard playoff she was...

Sam Stosur ready for another summer fling

In the frame: Sam Stosur is all concentration at the Australian Open earlier this year.

Linda Pearce Sam Stosur will enter yet another Australian summer as the highest-ranked Australian, building towards the home grand slam she acknowledges is different, if not necessarily harder, than any of the...

Australian Open final one of Rafael Nadal's 'hardest moments' in tennis

Rafael Nadal

Linda Pearce Rafael Nadal admits that the last time he set foot on an Australian tennis court was one of the most difficult: last January, when a back injury, misdiagnosed as sportsmanship by a cynical crowd,...

The Age

Saville out of playoff but still in the wildcard hunt

Luke Saville.

Linda Pearce Luke Saville's quest to win an Australian Open wildcard may have been ended prematurely by a hamstring injury, but the former world No.

Injury forces Luke Saville out of Australian Open playoff

Luke Saville was forced to withdraw from the wildcard playoff.

Linda Pearce Luke Saville has withdrawn from the Australian Open wildcard playoff with a hamstring injury.

No wildcards left in Australian Open playoff

Luke Saville plays a forehand against Christopher O'Connell during the Australian Open wildcard playoffs.

Linda Pearce Top seeds Luke Saville and John-Patrick Smith, No. 4 Ben Mitchell and defending champion Jordan Thompson have advanced to the semi-finals of the Australian Open wildcard playoff, with the coveted...

Olivia Rogowska vies for Australian Open wildcard

Olivia Rogowska plays a backhand in her first-round match against Seone Mendez at Melbourne Park on Tuesday.

Linda Pearce Olivia Rogowska is determined to keep reminding herself that this has been her best season, even as the late-entry top seed finds herself back at Melbourne Park attempting to win an Australian Open...