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Australian Open 2021: Dominic Thiem shocked by Grigor Dimitrov; Serena Williams and Naomi Osaka survive

A tired-looking Thiem, after a five-set victory over Australia’s Nick Kyrgios, collapsed in straight units towards Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov who received 6-4, 6-4, 6-0 in a bit over two hours.

Melbourne: US Open champion Dominic Thiem turned the Australian Open’s first main male sufferer on Sunday, as Naomi Osaka and Serena Williams weathered the scares to succeed in the quarter-finals.

Elsewhere, US Open finalist Alexander Zverev defeated 23-seeded Dusan Lajovic, 6-4, 7-6 (5), 6-3 to advance to the quarter-finals.

Sixth-seeded Zverev, semi-finalist in Australia final yr, will face the winner of Sunday’s last match between Novak Djokovic and No.14 Milos Raonic.

A tired-looking Thiem, after a five-set victory over Australia’s Nick Kyrgios, collapsed in straight units towards Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov who received 6-4, 6-4, 6-0 in a bit over two hours.

Dimitrov’s victory over Thiem, third seed and finalist final yr, units up a quarter-final with shock bundle Aslan Karatsev, who’s within the final eight in his Grand Slam debut.

“Whether or not it is a fairy story or not, it is a recreation and it’s important to be ready,” Bulgaria’s Dimitrov mentioned of the unannounced Russian.

“I’ve seen a little bit of his video games, clearly he is a harmful participant.”

Australian Open 2021 Dominic Thiem stunned by Grigor Dimitrov Serena Williams Naomi Osaka survives

Serena Williams noticed a fiery huge hitter in Aryna Sabalenka enter the quarterfinals on the Australian Open. AP

Earlier within the day, Williams fell to the bottom, her proper ankle closely taped spinning, her physique twisting, her racquet flying.

It was firstly of the second spherical of a aggressive match as potential within the fourth spherical of the Australian Open towards a youthful model of herself – scathing serves, large cuts on the groundstroke , a fierce streak – and on an prolonged Sunday when issues appeared to be going. being escaping.

Williams rapidly raised her hand to point she was okay, tightened the laces on her proper shoe, and though it took a short while for her to regain management, she did, simply in time. Within the final two video games, Williams took a 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 victory over seventh seed Aryna Sabalenka to succeed in the quarter-finals at Melbourne Park.

Two years in the past at this event, Williams was on the verge of a quarterfinal victory when she injured her ankle and ended up dropping.

“Properly my first thought was, ‘Not one other ankle sprain in Australia.’ However I knew instantly that it wasn’t. Then I used to be extra embarrassed than something. I used to be like, “Oh, my gosh. I do not prefer to fall,” Williams mentioned. “However I used to be fantastic. I imply, as soon as I noticed I did not twist my ankle, I used to be like, ‘OK I am fantastic, simply let me rise up.’ “

Williams, who wore a black T-shirt with “Unstoppable Queen” in gold caps at his press convention, got here near an eighth Australian Open championship and a document twenty fourth Grand Slam singles title.

Her most up-to-date occurred in 2017, whereas she was pregnant.

On a cloudy day with the temperature within the mid-60s Fahrenheit (excessive teenagers Celsius), Williams and Sabalenka brushed apart a whole lot of subtlety or nuance.

“I used to be okay with that, actually,” Williams mentioned. “If she needs to play the ability, let’s go.”

These two hit the ball onerous again and again at Rod Laver Area, and Williams was barely any higher. She completed with extra winners, 30-24, and extra aces, 9-4, whereas rising her greatest serve within the recreation to a pace of 126 mph (202 km / h).

When Williams wanted to steal, she did it fairly properly, claiming 13 of 15 factors when she went to the web. Extra importantly, she coated the court docket the identical approach she did in her youth, when opponents’ obvious victors had develop into mere feed for her personal strikes.

And she or he confirmed no signal of a left Achilles tendon downside that hampered her in a US Open semi-final loss in September and compelled her to withdraw from the Open from. France earlier than the second spherical later that month.

“I labored actually onerous on my motion. Yeah, I like amassing balls. I imply clearly I like being on offense, however I can play very well on protection too,” mentioned the American. 39 years outdated. . “I have not considered my Achilles. It is so good not to consider it. Oh, my God.”

Sabalenka – a 22-year-old Belarusian who solely performed her second Slam match within the fourth spherical – was visibly and audibly annoyed. She typically cried after dropping factors. She additionally spiked her racket.

With the nice high quality of the match, the one disgrace was that no fan was round to see it in particular person. It’s because it was Day 2 of the five-day lockdown imposed by the Victoria State authorities after a number of COVID-19[female[feminine circumstances arose at a neighborhood lodge. (Any applause or chatter from viewers heard at house was broadcast in broadcasters’ streams).

Williams now faces Simona Halep or Iga Swiatek, who have been scheduled to fulfill on Sunday night time. The opposite quarter-final of this half of the draw might be Naomi Osaka towards Hsie Su-wei, 35, of Taiwan.

On the lads’s facet, there was extra surprising information: Dimitrov’s subsequent opponent is Aslan Karatsev, a 27-year-old Russian qualifier who’s ranked 114th and the primary participant in 1 / 4 of a century to succeed in the quarter-finals in his debut in Grand Slam. Karatsev eradicated Felix Auger-Aliassime, twentieth seed, 3-6, 1-6, 6-3, 6-3, 6-4.

Australian Open 2021 Dominic Thiem stunned by Grigor Dimitrov Serena Williams Naomi Osaka survives

Naomi Osaka got here from a set to beat Garbine Muguruza. AP

Osaka barely superior, saving two match factors and profitable the final 4 video games to dominate Garbiñe Muguruza 4-6, 6-4, 7-5.

Osaka, seeded third, returns to the quarterfinals of a event she received in 2019 for certainly one of her three main trophies. Osaka ran their 18-game profitable streak – a race that included a US Open title in September.

“She’s taking part in very well. Huge hits, huge serve,” Muguruza mentioned. “It offers him a whole lot of free factors.”

The important thing second got here when Osaka served at 15-40 whereas trailing 5-3 within the final set. Muguruza could not convert any probability to finish issues: Osaka delivered certainly one of his 11 aces at 118 mph (191 km / h) on the primary; Muguruza missed a groundstroke within the second.

Fifteen minutes later, the match was over.

Hsieh, 71st, 6-4, 6-2 victory over 2019 French Open finalist Marketa Vondrousova made her the oldest lady to make her main quarter-final debut within the skilled period.

That is the thirty eighth main for Hsieh, who beat 2019 US Open champion Bianca Andreescu within the second spherical.

The key to Hsieh’s success?

“I am attempting to faux,” she joked, “I am solely 18”.

(With contributions from AFP)

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