Best matches of the 2015 Australian Open so far
The 2015 Australian Open has been a rollercoaster ride so far, for the fans and the players alike. There have been thrills, ups and downs and some brilliant tennis on show. While we witnessed some big players fall in the initial rounds, we also saw some underdogs make their way all the way to semis.
Note: You can watch all the Australian Open action live on Sony Liv Sports here.
Here are the five best matches at this year’s edition of the Australian Open so far:
5. Gael Monfils vs Lucas Pouille
He is a favourite in Australia, and is one of the most flamboyant players on the tour. He is none other than Gael Monfils, and he played one of the most interesting matches so far against compatriot Lucal Pouille.
It was a thrilling five-setter where Monfils lost the first two sets 7-6 and 6-3. The fellow Frenchman Lucas seemed all set to send Monfils packing at the very first hurdle, but La Monf came back strongly to win the next three sets and the match. With his stirring comeback, Monfils won not just the match, but the hearts of the viewers too.
4. Milos Raonic vs Feliciano Lopez
This was one marathon match but the world number 8 Raonic came through strongly to defeat the Spanish veteran Feliciano Lopez 6-4, 4-6, 6-3, 6-7(7), 6-3 and reach his first Australian Open quarterfinal.
It was a battle of big servers, where Lopez calmly saved two match points in the fourth set tie-break before sending the match into a decider. Heart beats increased when Lopez double-faulted in the eighth game, and Raonic clinched the epic encounter when Lopez pushed a shot wide.
With this win, Raonic became the second Canadian to reach the last eight at Melbourne Park, nearly 50 years after Michael Belkin achieved the feat in 1968.
3. Nick Kyrgios vs Andreas Seppi
Australia was on its feat once again with local sensation Nick Kyrgios in action against Andreas Seppi in the fourth round. Seppi was coming on the back of a stunning victory over Roger Federer and looked good to progress against Kyrgios.
The Italian was even two sets to love up and looked to close the match without wasting any time. But in one of the best comebacks of the Australian Open, Kyrgios turned things around in the third set to mount an breathtaking fight. In one of the most nerve-wracking matches so far, Kyrgios edged past Seppi 5-7, 4-6, 6-3, 7-6(5), 8-6
The Australian saved a match point while serving at 5-6 in the fourth set before jumping to a 4-1 lead, break in hand in the fifth. But Seppi wasn’t done yet, and as both these players went into overtime, the audience witnessed an absolutely amazing display of world class tennis.
2. Madison Keys vs Venus Williams
One of the most talked about matches of the Oz Open so far was Venus Williams’ match with Madison Keys, where the world number 18 American star was defeated by the now-popular Keys, who is also from USA.
The match was truly hearbreaking for all the Venus Williams fans who were thoroughly enjoying her comeback into the women’s tennis elite. But it was a case of youth triumphing over experience in this quarterfinal match, as the undseeded teenager Keys defeated the 34-year-old tennis legend Venus 6-3, 4-6, 6-4.
Keys looked firm and resilient in the first set but her left leg injury resurfaced in the second set, which she lost. But in the end she converted her big shots into a big victory which made her enter her first Grand Slam semifinal ever.
“I’m very happy I’m into the semifinals, but the moment is definitely sweeter being able to play Venus,” Keys said. “You just have to enjoy the moment, and I did enjoy it, and I get to enjoy another moment next round.”
1. Dominika Cibulkova vs Victoria Azarenka
What was supposed to be Victoria Azarenka’s Grand Slam comback from an injury-prone season turned out to be Dominika Cibulkova’s rise to glory, as the former champion was defeated in this pulsating Round of 16 encounter. Azarenka’s Australian Open journey ended as the Slovak beat her 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 in a match filled with extended rallies, momentum shifts and impressive shot-making.
The two women combined for 76 winners and sprinted all over the court throughout match. After the loss, Azarenka spoke to the media and said: “Overall, I think my attitude and my approach to matches, to tournaments, has changed. That's more satisfying for me. I feel that I'm very honest with myself on my effort and I'm working really hard.
"I want to be realistic and I want to do better ... I just need to go there step by step."