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Australian Open: Daniil Medvedev beats scare to reach semis

The 25-year-old Russian had his back firmly up against the wall for much of an absorbing contest as his Canadian opponent produced some stunning tennis
Daniil Medvedev
Daniil Medvedev
File Photo

Reuters   |   Melbourne   |   Published 27.01.22, 02:00 AM

Top seed Daniil Medvedev battled back from two sets down and saved a match point against Felix Auger-Aliassime to reach the Australian Open semi-finals with a 6-7(4), 3-6, 7-6(2), 7-5, 6-4 victory on Wednesday.

The 25-year-old Russian had his back firmly up against the wall for much of an absorbing contest as his Canadian opponent produced some stunning tennis on Rod Laver Arena.

But Medvedev simply refused to lie down as he overturned a two-set deficit for only the second time in his career to set up a Friday semi-final against Greek world No.4 Stefanos Tsitsipas.

Ninth seed Auger-Aliassime, 21, was the dominant player in the first set and cruised through the second. Medvedev was hanging on towards the end of the third, as Auger-Aliassime sensed victory but managed to close out a tie-break.

The Canadian had a match point in the 10th game of the fourth set after a Medvedev double-fault but the Russian responded with huge serving to stay alive. Medvedev then broke serve in the next game and held his own to extend the match into a decider — finally seizing the initiative with an early break as the match entered its fifth hour.

Fingers crossed

Tsitsipas will be hoping it is third time lucky in an Australian Open semi-final after his scintillating 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 victory against Sinner. With Melbourne’s big Greek population, Tsitsipas has always drawn strong support at the Australian Open and it was the same again in the clash against Sinner.

“I think my humility helped a lot today (Wednesday). I knew I was going on the court facing a very good player. I tried to focus on my best shots and it paid off more than I thought,” Tsitsipas, a semi-finalist here in 2019 and 2021,  said in his on-court interview.

Iga’s first

French Open winner Iga Swiatek managed to temper her frustrations and rally from a set and a break down in brutal heat to overpower Estonian Kaia Kanepi 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-3 on Wednesday to reach her first Australian Open semi-final.

The Pole will next meet USA’s Danielle Collins, who earlier defeated Frenchwoman Alize Cornet for a place in Saturday’s final.

In their first career meeting, Swiatek wasted breakpoint chances in each of Kanepi’s first three service games and it was the Estonian who converted her first chance in the seventh game to nose ahead.

Cornet run ends

Collins, the 27th seed, ended Cornet’s dream run on Wednesday with a 7-5, 6-1 win, reaching her second semi-final at Melbourne Park, three years after her first. The American’s fitness was on full display during a sweltering morning match, as she ramped up the aggression to blow Cornet off the court in the second set.

9 in a row

British duo Alfie Hewett and Gordon Reid made history by capturing a ninth successive grand slam title with a 6-2, 4-6, 10-7 win over Gustavo Fernandez and Shingo Kunieda in the final of the wheelchair men’s doubles.



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