The 1st day of Australian Open quarter-finals was full of action and intensity. In the men’s side, two of the greatest game’s players ever took to the court, while on the women’s arena; a home grown superstar took another step towards becoming the 1st Australian female player in more than 40 years to raise the trophy. Let’s take a look at all the action that unfolded on the Rod Laver arena in Melbourne Park on this eventful Tuesday.
Federer v Sandgren
Roger Federer, the 6 time Australian Open champion was up against America’s Tennys Sandgren. The two players were separated by 97 rankings and 20 Grand Slam titles but looked even on the court. The World Number 100 brought the World Number 3 to his absolute limit for more than 3 hours.
Things appeared going as per predictions when Federer took the 1st set in a relatively easy fashion with a score of 6 games to 3. Sandgren who has looked impeccable in this year’s Australian Open and defeated players like Berrettini, Fognini and Sam Querrey was not going to bow out without a fight. He cruised through the next 2 sets breaking the Federer serve twice in both the sets. Federer appeared to be struggling with fitness and it seemed that exit gates were drawing near to the Swiss maestro.
In the 4th set, the American had 7 match points only to throw them all away. Federer came back from nowhere to win the tie breaker and level the match. The Swiss maestro looked to have found his lost touch back. He was all over Sandgren in the 5th set and won it 6 games to 3. Federer will now contest long term rival Novak Djokovic of Serbia in the semi-final.
Djokovic v Raonic
The 2nd quarter final of the day in men’s side was also highly anticipated as 2 players very much in form took on each other. Big serving Canadian Milos Raonic who had already defeated players like Tsitsipas and Cilic was up against the World Number 2 and defending champion Novak Djokovic of Serbia.
The match was expected to be tightly contested and in fact the opening games of the 1st set looked to further that expectation. However, the 7 time champion Djokovic then took control of the match. He tackled the Ranoic serve very effectively with his smart returns along with taking care of his own serve.
Novak was the 1st and the 2nd set with relative ease. The 3rd set went to the tie breaker but the Serb Superstar was quick to wrestle control there also. He won the tie breaker convincingly and entered yet another semi-final at Melbourne Park, thus setting up a mouth-watering clash with Roger Federer on Thursday.
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Barty v Kvitová
In the battle of two heavyweights the local favourite and World Number 1 Ash Barty collided with the 2019 runner up Petra Kvitová. The first set was fought hard and both players were neck to neck. Eventually the tie breaker would decide the winner. Barty won the breaker 8 games to 6 and thus took an early lead. Kvitová then dropped her level considerably in the 2nd set. She was broken twice and thus Ash Barty won the match.
Barty would now take on America’s Sofia Kenin as she bids to become the 1st Australian since Chris O’Neil in 1978 to hold the Daphne Akhurst trophy. With many strong players already out of the tournament, the top seed has great chances to repeat her Roland Garros 2019 victory at her home Grand Slam.
Kenin v Jabeur
The 2nd women’s quarterfinal was contested between surprise packages Sofia Kenin of United States and Ons Jabeur of Tunisia. Both had registered some upsets in the tournament and were now looking to advance one step further towards the semis. The American Kenin who is ranked World Number 15 proved too strong for the 78th ranked Tunisian. She was the better player and closed the match in 2 straight sets thus booking a semi-final berth in the tournament.
That is all we have for you from Melbourne Park on the 1st day of the quarterfinals. We will be back tomorrow to bring you the some action packed highlights of 4 more quarterfinals as Rafael Nadal, Simona Halep and other top ranked players take to the court. Keep reading the our wide coverage of the Australian Open on SportsCrunch as the tournament enters its business end.