Novak Djokovic Edges Thiem To Secure Historic 8th Australian Open Title - UBITENNIS
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Novak Djokovic Edges Thiem To Secure Historic 8th Australian Open Title

Novak Djokovic won a historic eighth Australian Open title as he edged out Dominic Thiem in five sets.

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Novak Djokovic (@AustralianOpen - Twitter)

Novak Djokovic edged out Dominic Thiem 6-4 4-6 2-6 6-3 6-4 to secure his 8th Australian Open title and 17th grand slam title. 

 

For the first time in his career, Novak Djokovic came back from 2 sets to 1 down in a grand slam final as he denied Dominic Thiem a first grand slam title.

The Serb lacked energy in the middle of the match but ultimately played his best tennis when it mattered as he made history once again.

As well as winning an 8th Australian Open title and 17th grand slam title, Djokovic will also return to world number one on Monday.

Looking for his 8th Australian Open title, Djokovic made an emphatic start as he rushed Thiem into errors from the back of the court.

The Austrian looked to take the match to Djokovic using his power but wasn’t allowed to implement that in the early exchanges as some impressive defence saw the Serb blast his way into a 3-0 lead.

However Thiem, who was into his 3rd grand slam final, started to find some rhythm and denied the red-hot Djokovic a double break lead.

This would cost Djokovic as the 5th seed finally found his fire-power that was missing in the opening five games as some stunning backhand winners gave him the break back in the 7th game.

Eventually though, Thiem got tight and nervous when serving to stay in the set and a costly double fault handed the 7-time Australian Open champion the opening set.

Although he didn’t show his best tennis in the opening set, Thiem bounced back in the second set with some powerful and smart retuning. This time it was Djokovic’s turn to double fault on break point down as the Austrian sealed the early break.

There was more tightness from Thiem in the latter stages of the set as he pushed too aggressively and Djokovic started to improve his level.

Even though the break back was secured, the world number two lost his concentration when called for two time violations in the game, which led to a loss of first serve and loss of game as well.

As Djokovic continued to share his anger with Damien Dumusois, Thiem held convincingly to level the match at one set all.

There was a momentum shift in the Austrian’s favour at the start of the third set as the Serb started to look physically drained.

Two quick breaks was sealed from Thiem who powered his shots past the tame Djokovic defence as a 4-0 lead was secured.

Despite some late resilience from Djokovic, it was all about the Austrian who was now a set away from his first grand slam title.

After an off-court medical time-out, the second seed started to look in better shape and became more solid as he looked to force a fifth set.

As both players started to play confidently on serve, something had to give in terms of players’ level and that is exactly what happened in the eighth game.

The Austrian’s level dipped which produced four unforced errors in a crucial service game. Just like all great champions, Djokovic pounced breaking serve and keeping his cool to seal the fourth set 6-3. This Australian Open final was going five sets.

Another few costly unforced errors cost Thiem to start the fifth set as Djokovic sealed the early break for 2-1 as he was closing in on history.

There were a few opportunities for the Austrian to break back but the pressure told when it really mattered as he couldn’t find his way past an unstoppable Novak Djokovic.

After 4 hours and 3 minutes, Djokovic secured a 17th grand slam title and an 8th Australian Open title to continue setting records in tennis.

https://twitter.com/doublefault28/status/1223957229801484289

In the trophy ceremony, both Dominic Thiem and Novak Djokovic praised each other’s achievements, “Huge congrats to Novak. Unreal what you are doing throughout all these years. You and two other guys have brought men’s tennis to a new level, I’m really proud I can compete in this time and period of tennis,” Thiem said.

“Congratulations to Dominic for an amazing tournament. It wasn’t to be tonight. You were very close to win it, you have a lot of time in your career to get one of the Grand Slam trophies,” Djokovic added.

It also means that the big three of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic will win the next 13 grand slam titles.

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Stefanos Tsitsipas, Gilles Simon and Felix Auger Aliassime reach the the semifinal in Marseille

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Defending champion Stefanos Tsitsipas edged past Vasek Pospisil 7-5 6-3 after 1 hour and 17 minutes to reach the semifinal at the Open 13 Provence in Marseille.

 

Both players stayed neck and neck until 5-5, before Tsitsipas earned his first break, when Pospisil hit a backhand long. The Greek star wrapped up the first set with an ace after 45 minutes.

Tsitsipas claimed his second break at 3-3 with a backhand return and reeled off 10 consecutive points to seal the second set 6-3.

Tsitsipas fired 8 aces and won 26 of his 30 first service points.

“It was not easy. I knew I would have to fight and be dynamic. He plays a very aggressive brand of tennis, so every point has to be treated respectfully. I played with passion and patience, and my fighting spirit, when I am in the right zone. It means good things can happen”, said Tsitsipas.

Gilles Simon cruised through to an upset 6-4 6-0 win over Danil Medvedev to advance to the semifinal. Simon converted five of his six break point chances and lost his serve only once.

The French veteran will take on Felix Auger Aliassime, who beat Egor Gerasimov 7-5 6-2. The young Canadian star broke serve four times and and won 83 % of his first serve points.

Gerasimov earned an early break in the first game to open up a 2-0 lead, but Auger Aliassime came back by winning two consecutive games to win the opening set 7-5. Auger Aliassime converted his fourth break point in the second game to open up a 3-0 lead and sealed the second set with another break in the eighth game.

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Alexander Bublik reaches his third career semifinal with win over Denis Shapovalov in Marseille

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Alexander Bublik reached the third ATP Tour semifinal of his career after beating Canadian Canadian Next Gen player Denis Shapovalov 7-5 4-6 6-3 after 2 hours and 18 minutes at the Open 13 Provence in Marseille.

 

Bublik fended off a total of four break points in the first set, including three chances from 0-40, got the break in the 12th game to close out the first set 7-5, when Shapovalov hit a forehand volley wide at 30-40 after 45 minutes.

Both players traded breaks at the start of the second set. Bublik did not convert three break points at 3-2, when he hit a forehand into the net on his first break point chance. Shapovalov broke serve in the seventh game to take a 4-3 lead with a drop shot and wrapped up the second set with his third ace.

Bublik opened up a 2-0 lead with a break in the second game of the third set. Shapovalov broke straight back in the third game. Bublik got another break lead in the eighth lead at 15, when Shapovalov hit a forehand wide. Bublik sealed the win with a hold at love.

“He is a great player and serve. It was our first match, but I have known him for a very long time. I was happy to break in the first set, then in the second set he was better, and I had my chances in the third and I held on. So I am very happy”,said Bublik.

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Milos Raonic, Steve Johnson, Frances Tiafoe and Ugo Humbert reach the quarter final in Delray Beach

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Milos Raonic hit 11 aces and saved the three break points he faced to beat German Cedrik Marcel Stebe 7-5 6-3 after 1 hour and 36 minutes reaching the quarter final at the Delray Beach, an ATP Tour 250 tournament.

 

Raonic earned a break in each set. Stebe earned a break point in the ninth game with a forehand down the line, but Raonic saved it with a forehand. Raonic faced two more break points in the 11th game, but Raonic saved them with service winners. Raonic earned a break with a forehand down the line winner in the 12th game to close out the first set 7-5. Raonicwon four consecutive points on return to earn a break and closed out the match 6-3 with a hold of serve.

“I got lucky through that first set and then I tried to be a bit more aggressive, create more things and that put a bit more pressure on him. It opened up the match for me a bit more”, said Raonic.

Raonic set up a quarter final against Steve Johnson, who edged past his compatriot Jack Sock 6-4 5-7 6-1 after 2 hours and 5 minutes to reach his first quarter final at ATP Tour level in six months. Johnson came back from losing the second set by racing out to a 5-0 lead.

“This is just one of those tournaments where you feel comfortable coming back every year. It’s great to see Sock back. I thought he played a really good second set and I just got bit of a momentum in the third set”, said Johnson.

French Next Gen player Ugo Humbert edged Miomir Kecmanovic 6-4 7-6 (8-6) after 1 hour and 42 minutes to reach his third quarter final in 2020. Humbert fended off eight of the ten break points he faced and earned three breaks to win the last four games of the first set from 2-4 down. Humbert broke Kecmanovic, as the Serbian player was serving for the second set at 6-5. The Frenchman saved a set point and came back from 5-6 down by winning the final three points of the tie-break to clinch the win after 1 hour and 43 minutes. Humbert has improved his win-loss record this year to 8-3.

“It’s always tough to play against Miomir, because he is a great player. He always plays at a high level. I lost to him last week and I was a little bit stressed before the match, so I am very happy to get the win today. You have to enjoy the victory because it’s not easy every week. Winning in Auckland gave me a lot of confidence. I beat some great players, but I have to continue my improvement every day”,said Humbert.

Humbert will face US player Frances Tiafoe, who battled past Tommy Paul 7-5 7-6 (7-4). Both players stayed neck and neck in the first set until the 11th game when Tiafoe earned a break with a return winner. He served out the set 7-5 with a service winner in the 12th game.

Paul earned a break in the sixth game, but he dropped his serve, while he serving for the set at 5-3. Tiafoe closed out the match with a backhand crosscourt winner at 6-4 in the tie-break.

“It’s never easy playing a good friend. It’s awkward, but I thought it was a pretty good match overall. My forehand was definitely on, so that helped. I am starting to play good tennis again and just competing hard in every match”,said Tiafoe.  

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