Tennis - Australian Open Update
The Australian Open has now reached the second week and by the time you read this article the quarter-finals will be determined. It is great to see Britain’s Kyle Edmund reach the quarter-final stage and he has played exceptionally well in tough conditions to reach this stage. He faces an even tougher test against the World number three Dimitrov next up and the odds favour the Bulgarian as he leads the head-to-head 2-0 and was impressive when seeing off Aussie Kyrgios in four sets last time out. Top seed Nadal is also through the quarter-finals again and he has looked in ominous form so far, but he did drop his first set of the tournament last time out against the talented and diminutive Schwartzman. He faces sixth seed Cilic next up, leads the head-to-head 5-1 and if this pans out like both of last season’s encounters on hard courts it should be a reasonably straight forward win for Nadal.
The remaining four quarter-finalists from the bottom half of the draw will be known today and they include the likes of Federer (sseded 2), Thiem (5), six-time Australian Open winner Djokovic (14) and Berdych (19). I would not be surprised if Djokovic was made to work hard for his win against the impressive Next Gen star Chung, who won the inaugural Next Generation Finals last November and was even more impressive when dispatching fourth seed Alexander Zverev last time out. Berdych may have also struggled against the wily and experienced Fognini while I expect Federer and Thiem will have progressed without too much drama against the surprise packages of Hungarian Fuscovic’s and American Sandgren, who have both punched well above their weight so far, this tournament.