A YOUNG tennis prospect from the Bradford District has bowed out of the Australian Open after her first-ever appearance in the main draw of a Grand Slam.

Oxenhope talent Francesca Jones, who is just 20, beat three higher-ranked players in last month’s qualifying event in Dubai to reach the tournament in Melbourne.

But the world number 245 faced a daunting task in the first round this morning, going up against two-time Grand Slam quarter-finalist Shelby Rogers.

And Jones’ American opponent just proved too strong in the end, winning 6-4 6-1 in 67 minutes.

It was a nightmare start for the Oxenhope underdog, as Rogers fired in an ace on the first point of the match and held to love, before Jones made several unforced errors to get broken in her first service game.

But after the American made it 3-0, Jones began to hit back. The young Brit produced a strong service game to put herself on the board, before some excellent returns and a Rogers double fault saw her break back.

Jones’ big forehand started to come to the fore, and her brave, aggressive play was rewarded in game six, as she saved a break point to level things up at 3-3.

Rogers bit back with some hard-hitting of her own to get back in front, but another strong hold from Jones made it 4-4.

After the American held easily for 5-4, Jones chose a bad time to make two double faults on her own serve, and was broken to 15, meaning Rogers moved a set in front.

The second set was far more one-sided. Rogers was dominating on her own serve, while Jones began to lose her cool on hers.

She complained that Hawkeye had made an error on a baseline shot from Rogers, which led to the American making it 2-0, before the Brit received a time violation on her way to 4-0 down.

Rogers made it 5-0 with an ace, but Jones at least avoided the ignominy of a bagel, producing a confident hold to pull it back to 5-1.

It was far too late by this point though, and Rogers held once more to close out the match.

The Australian Open is the first Grand Slam to be played without any line-judges on the court in an effort to reduce the number of officials, in line with coronavirus protocols.

And Jones was still seething with that Hawkeye decision in game two of the second set, describing the apparently long Rogers forehand that was called in as "extremely questionable".

She said: "Massive, massive momentum change at that point.

"They really need to check that system. I have seen a couple of mistakes that have been shown.

"I much prefer human error than systematic error. It's a new system and I understand why it's being used, but I think that definitely needs to be revised."