Rafael Nadal is a win away from a record-breaking 21st grand slam title after getting past Matteo Berrettini to reach the Australian Open final on Friday.

Nadal overcame the Italian seventh seed 6-3 6-2 3-6 6-3 after two hours, 55 minutes under the Rod Laver Arena roof in their semi-final on a stormy day in Melbourne.

The Spanish star will face either Daniil Medvedev or Stefanos Tsitsipas in the decider, in which he can break the record for most grand slam titles won by a man.

Nadal had won his only previous meeting with Berrettini and he targeted the Italian's backhand from the outset, and it worked wonders.

Berrettini, however, fought hard and forced a fourth set against Nadal, who reached his sixth Australian Open final and 29th major decider, a tally only bettered by Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic (31 each).

 

Nadal targeted the Berrettini backhand from the start, and it helped yield a break in the second game.

Back-to-back unforced errors from that wing, the second pulled wide, from Berrettini handed Nadal a 2-0 lead.

That break proved to be enough for Nadal in a 43-minute opening set, closed out despite Berrettini briefly threatening in the ninth game.

Perhaps still recovering from the disappointment of the first set, Berrettini was broken to start the second, three unforced errors – two from a forehand side that had appeared capable of doing damage to Nadal – giving the Spaniard a break point he converted with a forehand winner.

Berrettini had no answers to Nadal's consistency and relentlessness and even his forehand was beginning to let him down as he fell 3-0 behind in the second set, a deficit he was never going to recover from.

Nadal was unable to pull away early in the third set and instead it was Berrettini, suddenly sparked to life and looking far more energetic, who struck to break for 5-3.

A running forehand pass down the line helped set up the break chance and Berrettini delivered a forehand winner before serving it out to love.

Berrettini went on a run of winning 23 consecutive points on serve, but when that was ended in the eighth game of the fourth set, he found trouble.

He saved a break point after a 23-shot rally but then netted consecutive forehands to fall 5-3 behind, Nadal closing out his victory to reach the final.

 

DATA SLAM: Nadal showing no signs of slowing down

Even at 35, Nadal has reached yet another grand slam final.

He became the fifth man aged 35 or older to reach a grand slam final in the Open Era, after Federer, Ken Rosewall, Mal Anderson and Andre Agassi.

The win over Berrettini also saw Nadal beat a top-10 player at the Australian Open for the first time since 2017.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Nadal – 28/19
Berrettini – 38/39

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Nadal – 5/2
Berrettini – 14/2

BREAK POINTS WON
Nadal – 4/8
Berrettini – 1/2

Australia expects as Ash Barty faces Danielle Collins in Saturday's grand slam final at Melbourne Park.

The world number one, from Ipswich, Queensland, will be bidding for her third grand slam singles title but a first at the Australian Open.

The wait for a home champion has been a long one, but it could soon be over.

Chris O'Neil was the last Australian winner of the women's singles, way back in 1978, while the last men's singles champion was Mark Edmondson in 1976.

Australia has hardly been starved of tennis talent over the past 40 years, but for one reason or another, the home slam has been beyond their reach.

Here, Stats Perform remembers the household names who have seen their hopes dashed in Melbourne.

Jelena Dokic

Dokic never came close in Melbourne, truth be told. Which is not to say she lacked the ability, having reached the Wimbledon semi-finals in 2000 and climbed as high as number four in the WTA rankings two years later. Dokic's career was blighted by a traumatic relationship with her overbearing and violent coach and father, Damir, whom she alleged physically abused her on many occasions. Her best performance at Melbourne Park came against all expectations, at the outset of a tour comeback in 2009 when she reached the quarter-finals, losing out there to Dinara Safina. Dokic, who is now 38 and retired from the tour, has been conducting on-court interviews during this year's Australian Open.

Lleyton Hewitt

'Rusty' won Wimbledon and US Open titles at the peak of his powers, and reached number one in the world at the age of 20. Before Roger Federer came along with different ideas, it seemed Hewitt might rule the roost in the men's game for years to come. He reached one Australian Open final, and in 2005 that was a glorious chance to secure a home major as he faced Russian Marat Safin in the final. Hewitt won the first set, but then Safin took command, winning in four. Incredibly, it would be the last grand slam men's singles final not to feature Federer, Rafael Nadal or Novak Djokovic until the 2014 US Open (Nishikori v Cilic).

Pat Cash

Cash's career peak came at Wimbledon in 1987, when he beat Ivan Lendl to capture the title before famously climbing up to the players' box. At the start of that year he almost won the Australian Open, too, when that tournament was staged on grass at Kooyong, in Melbourne's suburbs. He lost a five-set thriller to Stefan Edberg, another grass-court master, and when the tournament moved to Melbourne Park a year later, shifting to hardcourts, Cash was a finalist once more. Again, he suffered heartbreak in a deciding set, Mats Wilander denying Cash home glory, and he would never play a grand slam final again.

Samantha Stosur

Stosur, who called time on her singles career after a second-round defeat in Melbourne this year, was Australia's most recent women's singles grand slam champion until Barty came along. She triumphed at the 2011 US Open, sensationally beating Serena Williams in the Flushing Meadows final, and got to as high as number four in the world. She also reached the 2010 French Open final, but Stosur was never a factor in the business end of her home major, at least in singles. The fourth round was the furthest she ever went, but it was a different story in doubles, as she won an Australian Open mixed title in 2005, alongside fellow Australian Scott Draper. In the twilight of her career, in 2019, she teamed up with Zhang Shuai to win the women's doubles, a poignant success after so much singles frustration.

Mark Philippoussis

Philippoussis, aka 'Scud', was a US Open runner-up in 1998 and also reached the 2003 Wimbledon final, where he was the sacrificial lamb as Federer scooped the first grand slam title of his career. In Australia, though, just like Stosur, his slam peak was round four, a disappointment considering his talent and weaponry. In 1996, Philippoussis stunned the then world number one Pete Sampras in the third round in Melbourne, only to lose to lowly ranked compatriot and doubles expert Mark Woodforde in his next match. Arguably the most famous story concerning Philippoussis and the Australian Open is the widely reported rumour he was spotted kissing Anna Kournikova in an underground car park at the 2000 tournament. Both denied it. "Just good friends," was Kournikova's verdict.

Pat Rafter

Rafter won back-to-back US Opens in 1997 and 1998, as well as reaching consecutive Wimbledon finals in 2000 and 2001. A semi-final run in Melbourne in 2001, which proved to be the serve-volley master's last year on tour, was Rafter's best performance at his home slam, eventual champion Andre Agassi coming from two sets to one down to deny him a place in the title match.

Nick Kyrgios

All the talent in the world, but Kyrgios appears to be happy enough ploughing a unique furrow though his tennis career. Top five in the shot-making stakes, Kyrgios turns 27 in April and his ability has taken him to just two slam quarter-finals to date, including at the 2015 Australian Open. He was a junior champion at Melbourne Park in 2013, and has also reached the fourth round twice in the seniors. It is up to Kyrgios whether he wishes to make optimum use of his remarkable racket skills or carry on entertaining with virtuoso, but short-lived, singles runs. You wonder whether a Barty triumph could ignite this firecracker of a player.

Ash Barty will plot a path to victory over Danielle Collins in the Australian Open final with the coach she describes as "a magician" and "a massive part of my life".

Australian home hero Barty has been a hot favourite for the title since before the first ball was struck in Melbourne, and to date she has justified all the hype and expectation.

Barty has dropped only 21 games across six matches to reach the final. Since 2000, only Serena Williams (16 games at the 2013 US Open and 19 at the 2012 US Open) and Venus Williams (20 games at Wimbledon in 2009) have lost fewer games to reach a grand slam final.

The last player to lose fewer games en route to the final in Australia was Monica Seles in 1993 (20 games), and she went on to beat Steffi Graf in a title match that went to three sets.

This is the level Barty is at now, as an established world number one and reigning Wimbledon champion, and a Collins victory on Saturday would be a major upset.

Yet Barty sees the 28-year-old American as a major threat, and the evidence of Collins' destructive performance against seventh seed Iga Swiatek in Thursday's second semi-final attests to that.

Collins won 6-4 6-1 and hit 27 winners and only 13 unforced errors, securing a place in her first slam final.

 

"She's an exceptional ball striker," said Barty. "She's someone who stands on the baseline and can hit all spots of the court from any position. I think the challenge is going to be trying to get her off balance.

"We'll do our homework and try to figure out a plan, and come Saturday try and execute. Danielle's done incredibly well here in Australia before. The way she's able to control the baseline and really take the game on, she's one of the most fierce competitors out here.

"She loves to get in your face and loves to take it on. It's going to be a challenge for me to try to neutralise as best as I can, but it's certainly nice to see her out here playing her best stuff."

Working out a strategy for the match, alongside Barty, will be veteran coach Craig Tyzzer. Barty trusts him implicitly to get the plan right.

"'Tyzze' is a magician; he's able to look at a lot of different matches, look at key matches, some recent and some old, and work our plan out in looking at different conditions and things like that," Barty said in a news conference after her thumping 6-1 6-3 semi-final win against Madison Keys.

"He's the man that does all the work. I just get to go out there and have fun with it."

Barty is understating her role there, but she has turned singles into a team game, relying on the likes of Tyzzer and mindset coach Ben Crowe to steer her on the right path.

She is attempting to become the first Australian player to win this title since Chris O'Neil in 1978, so the pressure is on, and it helps that those around her help to relieve the stress.

"Everyone is equally important. We're all equal, we all play our roles," Barty said. "The most amazing thing is we all communicate really well together and get along with each other and know when it's time to back off, relax, and then when it's time to switch on and really have a crack.

"'Tyzze' has been a massive part of my life since 2016. Before that, we'd done some work together, but the work he's done in setting up an amazing group of people around us has propelled my career for both of us. The experiences we've been able to share has been remarkable.

"It starts with my family, my sisters, obviously my professional team who contribute as much time and energy into my career and help me try and live out my dreams. I cannot thank them enough for the time and effort they put in to someone else.

"Being able to enjoy it all together and lighten up when we're not focused on the match is a really important part of that."

Barty's first serve has been a huge weapon, while Collins' return of the second serve has been a significant factor behind her run. So if Barty can land enough first serves on Saturday, that could prove telling. It has helped her to save 13 of 14 break points so far in this tournament.

Giving Collins a regular look at her second serve could be costly. Collins has won more points on the return of second serve (90) than any other woman in the tournament.

Barty ranks ninth on that list but is the leader on winning points when landing a first serve, achieving an 83 per cent success rate.

Danielle Collins is relishing a "spectacular" Australian Open showdown with home favourite Ash Barty after outclassing Iga Swiatek to reach her maiden grand slam final.

Collins was imperious in her second major semi-final on Rod Laver Arena, taking just an hour and 18 minutes to beat Swiatek 6-4 6-1.

The 28-year-old American's emphatic victory was her second over a top-10 opponent in a grand slam.

Collins was relentless as a struggling Swiatek had no answer to her aggressive approach, and the 27th seed will attempt to tear up the script by denying Barty a first Australian Open title on Saturday.

It was only last April that the Florida native underwent emergency surgery for endometriosis, an extremely painful condition in which tissue similar to that which lines the uterus grows outside of it.

Collins was also diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in 2018, but she has broken new ground for her career at Melbourne Park, dropping only two sets en route to the final.

She said in an on-court interview following the win over Swiatek: "It feels amazing. It's been such a journey, and it doesn't happen overnight. So many years of hard work and hours at an early age on court.

"Yesterday I was talking about all the early mornings my dad would get up with me and practise before school. It's just incredible to be on this stage and especially with the health challenges. I'm just so grateful, and I couldn't be happier."

Collins beat world number one Barty to reach the Adelaide International quarter-finals last year, having lost their previous three meetings, and the world number 30 will embrace such a big occasion this weekend.

She said: "We've had some incredible battles over the years. It's going to be really spectacular, with the energy the fans bring, whether they are for me or for my opponent.

"I think we're just so grateful after everything with COVID to have incredible energy and people here supporting us."

Ash Barty is ready for "one last crack" on Saturday when she will bid to become a first home winner of the Australian Open women's singles in over 40 years.

The 25-year-old Queenslander powered through to the third grand slam final of her career with a clinical 6-1 6-3 win over Madison Keys on Thursday.

She is 2-0 for her past two finals in the majors, taking titles at the 2019 French Open and last year at Wimbledon, and has looked an unstoppable force in Melbourne.

That theory will be put to the test by Danielle Collins, the 28-year-old big-hitting American who dismantled Iga Swiatek's game in the second semi-final to reach a first slam final.

Barty is dialled in and up for the challenge, looking to land the title that was last won by an Australian when Chris O'Neil triumphed at the 1978 tournament.

"It's fun, it's brilliant to be playing in the business end of your home slam," Barty said in a news conference.

"Saturday's going to be a new experience for me. So I'll go out there and embrace it, smile, try and do the best that I can, and whatever happens, happens.

"It's been an incredible January and incredible summer for us, and I'm really looking forward to having one last crack here, to really go out and enjoy it."

Wendy Turnbull was the last Australian finalist in the women's singles, way back in 1980, and the scale of the achievement in ending the long wait is not lost on Barty, who has already won doubles and singles titles this month at the Adelaide International.

"To be in the finals weekend of your home grand slam is what a lot of Aussie players dream of," she added.

This is modesty, but Barty is now a long-standing world number one, and therefore anything but lifting the trophy would be a disappointment at this stage, with 27th seed Collins looking to spring what would be a major upset.

Barty said she was able to "play the match on our terms" against Keys, pointing to her on-court effort being a collaboration with her support team.

 

Keys was outplayed and her reflection on the experience of tackling Barty was blunt.

"It's tough, it sucks. She's just playing incredibly well," Keys said. "You have a game plan in your head, but she's just executing everything so well.

"She's serving incredibly well, so you don't get any free points on that; her slice is coming in so much lower and deeper than it was in the past, so it's hard to do anything on that; and then you try to play to her forehand and she can open you up there.

"She's so locked in and focused. I've played her a handful of times and this is easily the best I think she's ever been playing."

Barty, who dabbled with cricket before focusing on tennis, appears to have a work-life balance that would be the envy of many, finding it no problem to unwind once she leaves the gates of Melbourne Park. Enjoying the early Australian dominance in the women's Ashes has only brightened her mood.

"It's pretty easy for me. When I'm not here, I don't think about the tennis too much," she said. "I've got the women's Ashes to watch, which is brilliant, read a book, few coffees, and we're set."

The young Barty who first visited the Australian Open before hitting her teenage years, for a training camp, would stand in awe of the player she has become.

"I'd have been only 11 or 12 years old," she recalled. "To see how professional it was and to see everybody going about their business was really eye-opening.

"My first taste of it was in the juniors and I loved it. Being able to get a taste of that kind of lit the flame. You wonder what you can achieve."

Danielle Collins will face home favourite Ash Barty in her first grand slam final at the Australian Open after dispatching Iga Swiatek in straight sets.

Playing in only her second major semi-final at the age of 28, an assured Collins rose to the occasion to win 6-4 6-1 in dominant fashion on Rod Laver Arena.

The 27th seed from the United States was beaten by Petra Kvitova in the last four of the first grand slam of the year at Melbourne Park three years ago, but she was not to be denied on this occasion.

Swiatek was unable to become the first Polish woman to reach the final of this tournament, struggling with her serve from the start as her bid to win a second grand slam title came to a halt and Collins booked a showdown with world number one Barty on Saturday.

Collins capitalised on a shaky start from the 2020 French Open champion, breaking when the seventh seed sprayed a forehand long after double-faulting in a poor first service game.

An aggressive Collins was a double-break up at 3-0 after her out-of-sorts opponent drilled a backhand wide, but Swiatek sprung into life, winning back-to-back games to reduce the deficit to 4-2.

Swiatek trailed 5-2 after being broken for a third time as she struggled with her second serve and although Collins failed to serve out the set at the first attempt, she made no mistake second time around after firing down two aces.

The Florida native was in the zone, staying on her feet during changeovers, and she struck another blow by breaking in the first game of the second set with a cross-court backhand winner.

Swiatek's frustration mounted as her service woes continued, Collins near flawless with her backhand a potent weapon as she broke again to lead 3-0.

The ice-cool world number 30 showed not a hint of nerves, finishing off the job with another break after earning two match points with a glorious forehand winner and forcing a backhand error from Swiatek to move into the final.

 

DATA SLAM: Imperious Collins a class apart as Swiatek is let down by her serve

While Collins was at her very best in a brilliant performance, Swiatek looked like she did not know what had hit her.

Swiatek won only three of the 21 points behind her tentative second serve after landing only 60 per cent of her first serves in, and the 20-year-old fell into the trap of feeding Collins' dangerous backhand far too often.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS

Collins – 27/13
Swiatek – 12/13

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS

Collins – 7/4
Swiatek – 1/4

BREAK POINTS WON

Collins – 6/10
Swiatek – 2/3

Nick Kyrgios has often walked a tightrope when it comes to etiquette on a tennis court, but the surprise Australian Open doubles finalist insists: "I'm not creating a circus."

Playing with Thanasi Kokkinakis, Kyrgios has led an Australian charge to the men's doubles final, with compatriots Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell awaiting them in the title match.

It will be an all-Australian final in the men's doubles for the first time since 1980, guaranteeing home champions.

Showman Kyrgios mounted a defence of his brand of tennis after he and Kokkinakis downed Horacio Zeballos and Marcel Granollers 7-6 (7-4) 6-4 on Rod Laver Arena.

New Zealander Michael Venus had expressed annoyance at the behaviour of Kyrgios this week, after he and Tim Putz lost out in the quarter-finals to the home pair.

Venus said that match, which Kyrgios and Kokkinakis won in a deciding set, "felt like a circus", while taking direct aim at the conduct of Kyrgios by saying his maturity level was that of a 10-year-old.

Kyrgios, 26, says he can mix top-level tennis with entertainment, rebutting the "circus" accusation.

"I think I played pretty good tennis in the past. I've beaten pretty much every player that's picked up a racket," he told a news conference.

"I've obviously had to play a certain level of tennis. It's not like I'm going out there putting on a clown suit and creating a circus.

"I have also played, won titles, won big titles, I have played the traditional way. I think now I'm able to channel a different fan base. I think it's only positive in my opinion."

At the 2015 US Open, American tennis great John McEnroe questioned the eccentric shot selection of Kyrgios in a first-round loss to Andy Murray, telling ESPN: "You don’t want to be remembered as a clown. You want to be remembered as a player. He thinks he's a vaudeville entertainer."

Kokkinakis firmly backed his 'Special Ks' doubles partner on Thursday, saying critics should look at the attention Kyrgios brings to the sport from beyond its usual viewership.

"I think people have just got to be open," Kokkinakis said. "You're always trying to develop a sport and grow a sport.

"Of course, you've got to keep it within the boundaries. If people are so narrow-minded they can't see this is bringing a lot of fans and a lot of eyes, I think that is their problem honestly."

Kyrgios then addressed Kokkinakis, saying: "I think the quality of tennis was pretty good today, don't you think?"

Kokkinakis agreed. "That is what it is about. It's about having a good product on court that people actually come and enjoy. You can't please everyone," he said.

Ash Barty paid tribute to Dylan Alcott after the wheelchair tennis player ended his glittering career with defeat in the Australian Open final.

Alcott, who is the only man to complete a 'golden slam' in quad singles, and has won 23 major titles in total, is retiring at the age of 31.

He lost 7-5 6-0 to Sam Schroder in the final match of his career, as his bid for an eighth straight Australian Open title fell just short.

Alcott, who has been named Australian of the Year, won all four grand slams last year and also took gold in the Paralympic Games, defending his title from 2016.

His run to yet another final in Melbourne has been a remarkable story, and Barty – the WTA world number one who reached the women's singles final by beating Madison Keys in straight sets on Thursday – hailed her inspirational compatriot.

"Dylan for me is at the forefront of that, he has inspired a nation, inspired the whole globe," said Barty when asked about the success Australians are enjoying at the season's opening grand slam.

"We were watching his match today. I was with my physio and when he was giving his acceptance speech, we were both crying.

"I was like, I need to get out there and get ready, get my game on, but to watch Dylan and for him be able to share that moment with so many people here...

"The way that he and the Australian Open have opened up the opportunities for more disabled people all around the world to play tennis and have a go is just exceptional, I couldn't be more proud of him."

Barty and Alcott are just part of an impressive 2022 tournament for home favourites. Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis will face countrymen Matthew Ebden and Max Purcell in the men's doubles final, while Jason Kubler and Jaimee Fourlis are into the mixed doubles final.

"Unreal, honestly it's just incredible," said Barty on becoming the first Australian to reach the women's singles final since 1980. "I love coming out here and playing in the Australian Open.

"As an Aussie, we're exceptionally spoilt that we're a grand slam nation and get to play at home, in our back yard. I'm just happy that I get to play my best tennis here. I enjoy it, I've played well before and now I have the chance to play for a title. It's unreal."

Ash Barty continued her fairy-tale run at the Australian Open, crushing Madison Keys to become the first local woman to reach the singles final in 42 years.

The two-time grand slam champion continued her impressive form at Melbourne Park with a 6-1 6-3 victory over Keys on Rod Laver Arena on Thursday.

Barty, the world number one, became the first Australian woman to reach the singles final at the tournament since Wendy Turnbull in 1980.

She can become the first to win the title since Chris O'Neil in 1978 when she faces either Danielle Collins or Iga Swiatek in Saturday's final, which she will undoubtedly start as favourite.

Barty has dropped just 21 games on her way to the decider and the reigning Wimbledon champion was again ruthless against Keys, who lost her fourth grand slam semi-final in five such appearances.

The 25-year-old Barty settled well and broke the Keys serve in the opening game.

A powerful forehand created the opportunity before she delivered a cross-court winner off that wing to convert following a Keys drop shot.

Barty only made two first serves in her opening two service games yet did not lose a point.

Spurred on by a hopeful and enthusiastic home crowd, Barty's variety and depth – plus nine unforced errors in five games from Keys – helped her race into a 4-1 lead.

Keys finally won a point against the Barty serve in the sixth game, the Australian forced to save a break point before sealing the opening set in 26 minutes courtesy of a forehand return winner down the line.

The first real signs of nerves from Barty came in the fifth game of the second set, but she dug out a tough hold for 3-2.

Keys had settled, but Barty grabbed the break she was after in the sixth game with back-to-back forehand winners.

Barty looked calm throughout and that did not change as she served out the match in style, booking a spot in the final with a forehand winner.

DATA SLAM: Brilliant Barty on verge of ending Aussie wait

Barty has already ended one long wait – an Australian reaching the women's singles final at Melbourne Park.

She is a win away from ending another by becoming the first Australian winner of the men's or women's singles title in 44 years.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Barty – 20/13
Keys – 8/24

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Barty – 5/0
Keys – 1/1

BREAK POINTS WON
Barty – 4/6
Keys – 0/2

Nick Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis' dream run in the Australian Open men's doubles continued, reaching the final on Thursday.

Kyrgios and Kokkinakis stunned third seeds Horacio Zeballos and Marcel Granollers 7-6 (7-4) 6-4 in their semi-final on Rod Laver Arena.

The talented duo have beaten four seeded pairs on their way to the decider, where Australians Matt Ebden and Max Purcell await.

For the first time since 1980, it will be an all-Australian final in the men's doubles at the year's opening grand slam.

Dubbed the 'Special Ks', the pair took a tough first-set tie-break before being pulled back after leading the second set 4-1.

But Kyrgios and Kokkinakis sealed their win when the latter delivered a wonderful lob, sparking their celebrations in front of a strong Rod Laver Arena crowd.

Ebden and Purcell upset second seeds Joe Salisbury and Rajeev Ram 6-3 7-6 (11-9) in the other semi-final.

Daniil Medvedev drew inspiration from Novak Djokovic in order to complete a storming comeback against Felix Auger-Aliassime at the Australian Open.

The Russian was two sets down and facing a quarter-final exit at the hands of his on-song opponent, but he dug deep to roar back and set up a last-four showdown with Stefanos Tsitsipas.

After sealing a memorable 6-7 (4-7) 3-6 7-6 (7-2) 7-5 6-4 victory under the roof on Rod Laver Arena, Medvedev revealed that asking himself what world number one Djokovic would do had provided the catalyst for his revival. 

Asked how he managed to win a contest in which he had looked down and out, the US Open champion responded: "I have no idea.

"Talking about the match point, I managed to serve well. If I had a second serve who knows what would have happened.

"I was not playing my best. Felix served unbelievable; I was all over the place.

"Then, I thought to myself, what would Novak do? So I said, 'I am going to make him work'.

"I managed to raise my level and when they closed the roof I was able to go through momentum and I started playing better."

Medvedev, who was beaten by Djokovic in last year's Melbourne final, faced a match point against Auger-Aliassime in the fourth set before finding his groove.

He rode his luck at times, with Auger-Aliassime only converting two of his 11 break points as Medvedev improved his record in meetings between the pair to 4-0.

Daniil Medvedev came from two sets down to defeat Felix Auger-Aliassime and reach the Australian Open semi-final.

The world number two battled to a 6-7 (4-7) 3-6 7-6 (7-2) 7-5 6-4 victory in a thrilling contest on Rod Laver Arena, where 2021 runner-up Medvedev fended off a match point in the fourth set.

He will now face Stefanos Tsitsipas in what is his second consecutive last-four outing at this tournament after improving his head-to-head record against Auger-Aliassime to 4-0.

Medvedev and Auger-Aliassime met in the semi-finals of last year's US Open, when the former prevailed in straight sets en route to winning the title.

But the Russian, beaten by Novak Djokovic in last year's final, was soon on the back foot in Melbourne, handing Auger-Aliassime a break point at 5-5 when he misjudged a shot that he thought was going out, but dropped in.

Medvedev then compounded that error with a double fault, but Auger-Aliassime fluffed his own lines as he failed to serve out the set before redeeming himself in the tie-break.

Auger-Aliassime continued that momentum in the second set, breaking in a mammoth second game after doggedly staying in a long rally before his opponent pushed a forehand wide.

Facing a two-set deficit, Medvedev battled hard in the third as that too went to a tie-break, which he was leading 2-1 when rain arrived and forced the roof to be closed.

He wasted little time getting the job done once play resumed, Auger-Aliassime finally showing signs of weakness as a couple of unforced errors sealed his fate in a one-sided breaker.

Medvedev survived a match point at 5-4 down in the fourth and reeled off three games in a row as he began to combine power and precision to level matters and tee up a decider.

After fending off three break points in his opening service game, it was Medvedev who broke decisively in game three to claim an advantage that he clung onto in the face of spirited resistance from his Canadian opponent.

DATA SLAM: Medvedev continues head-to-head dominance

This was the fourth meeting between these two and Medvedev had only previously lost one of eight sets.

But it threatened to be a very different story on Wednesday before the US Open champion clicked into gear to continue his dominance of the pair's head-to-head record.

Auger-Aliassime will be left to lament his failure to seize on a match-point opportunity as he converted only two of his 11 break points.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Medvedev – 49/53
Auger-Aliassime – 64/75

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Medvedev  – 15/9
Auger-Aliassime – 18/4

BREAK POINTS WON
Medvedev  – 3/5
Auger-Aliassime – 2/11

Stefanos Tsitsipas revealed he had defied the expectations of his doctor after surging into the Australian Open semi-finals.

The world number four underwent surgery on his right elbow in November and barely had any competitive court time leading into the tournament in Melbourne.

His doctor suggested that taking part in the first grand slam of 2022 was a remote prospect, but the Greek reached the last four on Wednesday after a 6-3 6-4 6-2 win over Jannik Sinner.

"I'm pretty sure my doctor is watching right now," the 23-year-old said in his on-court interview. 

"We both didn't expect for me to be here, it was not part of our plan. He told me he didn't see me playing in Australia but I proved him wrong.

"He's a big tennis enthusiast and I am happy I found the right person to bring me back even stronger."

Tsitsipas outclassed Sinner on Rod Laver Arena to move into a second consecutive Australian Open semi-final and third in four years.

The Greek fourth seed broke early in each set on his way to a third win in four meetings with 11th seed Sinner, who was playing his second grand slam quarter-final.

Not even a brief rain delay that led to the roof being closed early in the second set could slow Tsitsipas, who delivered his best performance of the tournament so far.

"I am very, very happy with the way I served and used my tactics," he said. "Having the crowd support, it is truly unbelievable.

"It is part of the game. You never know what to expect from the weather. I knew I was heading towards the right direction.

"The conditions might have changed a little bit – slightly faster, not as bouncy – so my mind did. I tried to adapt and it just worked."

Tsitsipas will face either Daniil Medvedev or Felix Auger-Aliassime in the semi-finals.

Stefanos Tsitsipas produced a strong performance to brush aside Jannik Sinner and move into his third Australian Open semi-final.

Tsitsipas outclassed the talented 20-year-old from Italy with an impressive 6-3 6-4 6-2 victory on Rod Laver Arena on Wednesday.

The Greek fourth seed broke early in each set on his way to a third win in four meetings with 11th seed Sinner, who was playing his second grand slam quarter-final.

Not even a brief rain delay that led to the roof being closed early in the second set could slow Tsitsipas, who delivered his best performance of the tournament so far.

Tsitsipas will face either Daniil Medvedev or Felix Auger-Aliassime in the semi-finals.

 

Tsitsipas made an impressive start, landing an early break following a pair of forehand errors from Sinner, moving into a 3-0 lead.

Spurred on by a contingent of singing Greek fans, Tsitsipas closed out the opening set, set up by his fast start.

Tsitsipas created another opportunity for an early break in the second set after firing a backhand winner down the line at 30-30 in the third game.

Sinner was unable to deny the Greek star, a backhand cross-court flying wide to hand Tsitsipas the upper-hand.

Not even an unexpected rain delay on a hot and humid day in Melbourne could disrupt Tsitsipas' momentum, with the roof closed after the third game.

Like the first set, there was little pressure on either player's service games, but Tsitsipas' single break was again enough for him to take a two-sets-to-love lead.

A brilliant backhand pass down the line set up break points in the third game of the third set for Tsitsipas, converted when Sinner sent a forehand into the net.

Tsitsipas broke again to take a 4-1 lead on his way to a convincing victory and the semi-finals, starting to find the form to suggest he could be a threat for the title in Melbourne.

 

DATA SLAM: Tsitsipas stays perfect in major quarter-finals

The quarter-finals have proven to be no hurdle for Tsitsipas.

He improved to 5-0 in grand slam quarters, including 3-0 at Melbourne Park. Tsitsipas is playing his fifth Australian Open main draw and has reached the semis three times.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Tsitsipas – 30/28
Sinner – 18/22

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Tsitsipas – 4/2
Sinner – 4/1

BREAK POINTS WON
Tsitsipas – 4/4
Sinner – 0/0

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