Iga Swiatek came through a huge battle against Kaia Kanepi to advance to the Australian Open semi-finals on Wednesday.

Swiatek, the Polish seventh seed, made her second grand slam semi after a 4-6 7-6 (7-2) 6-3 victory over Kanepi on a warm day on Rod Laver Arena.

The 2020 French Open champion held off Kanepi, who suffered a seventh defeat in as many grand slam quarter-finals.

Swiatek fought hard and needed three hours, one minute to progress to a meeting with American 27th seed Danielle Collins.

The steadier start was made by Swiatek, with Kanepi saving break points in each of her opening three service games.

But the Pole was having some trouble with her serve, a fifth double fault giving Kanepi a break point in the seventh game, the Estonian converting with a fine forehand return winner.

Swiatek held after a gruelling 16-minute ninth game, saving four set points as the Rod Laver Arena crowd started to come to life.

Kanepi had won only one set in her six previous grand slam quarter-finals, but she eventually served out the opener against Swiatek, converting her ninth set point.

After Kanepi broke in the opening game of the second set, Swiatek – who was starting to move the veteran around the court – reeled off four straight games.

However, Kanepi responded, a pair of Swiatek double faults helping her break back in the seventh game on the way to a tie-break.

Swiatek was the more consistent of the two players in the tie-break to send the quarter-final into a deciding set.

After the players traded breaks early in the third set, Swiatek took a 3-2 lead after Kanepi sent a forehand narrowly wide before managing a tough hold in the sixth game.

Swiatek charged into a 5-2 lead and while her attempt at serving it out did not go to plan, she sealed her win with another break after a tremendous defensive point.

 

DATA SLAM: Swiatek hard to beat at majors

It takes a fair bit to beat Swiatek at a grand slam.

The 20-year-old is now 30-2 at majors against opponents ranked outside the top 30 after getting past world number 115 Kanepi.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Swiatek – 31/50
Kanepi – 35/62

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Swiatek – 5/12
Kanepi – 5/4

BREAK POINTS WON
Swiatek – 6/13
Kanepi – 5/13

Michael Venus hit out at Nick Kyrgios after bowing out of the men's doubles at the Australian Open on Tuesday.

The Kiwi and Tim Putz were beaten 7-5 3-6 6-3 by Kyrgios and Thanasi Kokkinakis in the quarter-finals at a loud Kia Arena.

But Venus was unhappy with Kyrgios, slamming the Australian for his antics.

"There'll always be his supporters and he'll always spin it in a way that helps him, but at the end of the day he's just an absolute k***," he told 1News.

"I think it just speaks for him. His maturity level, it's probably being generous to a 10-year-old to say it's at about that level."

Kyrgios and Kokkinakis have embarked on a memorable run to the semi-finals of the men's doubles, with crowds flocking to their matches.

Despite his criticism of Kyrgios, Venus also praised the two-time grand slam singles quarter-finalist's talent.

"He's an unbelievable tennis player, what he does on the tennis court, what he can do out there, his tennis IQ on the court, it is amazing and he's definitely on that side of things one of the best players in the world," he said.

"But from the maturity side of things you see why he's never fulfilled his potential and probably never will."

Danielle Collins ended Alize Cornet's dream run and reached her second Australian Open semi-final with a straight-sets win on Wednesday.

Collins moved into the last four in Melbourne for the second time in four years thanks to a 7-5 6-1 victory on Rod Laver Arena on Australia Day.

The American 27th seed, who will face either Iga Swiatek or Kaia Kanepi in the semi-finals, was in solid form in warm conditions.

Collins was the aggressor throughout against Cornet, who was playing her maiden grand slam quarter-final in her 63rd main-draw appearance.

 

It was Collins who dictated the majority of points from the baseline early and landed a break of serve in the fourth game.

Cornet saved three break points, but there was no denying Collins on her fourth opportunity, a powerful return setting up a simple volley winner for a 3-1 lead.

Collins looked the more comfortable in the warm weather, but Cornet hung in there and broke back when her opponent was trying to serve out the first set, the American's backhand letting her down with three unforced errors.

But Cornet dropped the first set when serving to stay in it, saving two set points but not a third – set up with a Collins forehand winner down the line – as she framed a forehand long.

Collins crushed a forehand return winner to break serve in the second game of the second set to take complete control of proceedings.

She broke to love to grab a 4-0 lead, cruising through the second set on her way to another last-four appearance in Melbourne.

 

DATA SLAM: Contender Collins finding consistency

The dangerous Collins has found consistency since the back end of last year.

She is now 31-7 since July 12, 2021 and will be hard to stop by either Swiatek or Kanepi in the semi-finals.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Collins – 28/29
Cornet – 11/17

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Collins – 5/4
Cornet – 2/0

BREAK POINTS WON
Collins – 4/9
Cornet – 1/3

Rafael Nadal almost pulled out of the Australian Open just days before heading to Melbourne, according to his uncle.

The 35-year-old battled past Denis Shapovalov on Tuesday to reach the semi-finals of the tournament for just the third time since 2016.

Nadal, who is chasing a record 21st grand slam title to break the three-way tie with Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic, has only won the first major of the year once in his career – back in 2009 – and lost at the quarter-final stage in 2020 and 2021.

Even with nine-time champion Djokovic not competing after being deported by border authorities over a visa dispute, few considered Nadal to be the favourite for the title this year given he went from August to December in 2021 without playing a match, having undergone surgery on a foot injury.

Nadal has looked in strong form, though, even recovering from apparent stomach trouble and difficulty in the heat to beat Shapovalov 6-3 6-4 4-6 3-6 6-3 after more than four hours of action on Rod Laver Arena.

Toni Nadal, his coach for most of his professional career, said his nephew nearly decided against competing at all in Australia as he did not feel ready.

Asked if he were surprised by Nadal's form, he told Cadena SER: "Yes, I'm surprised, because I remember when three days before the start, Rafa called my youngest son to hit a few balls after being quarantined due to coronavirus.

"At nine o'clock, we went to train and during training, he said, 'I don't know if I'm going to go or not because at the moment I'm not in condition for an Australian Open'. They only had three days to get a flight.

"The following day, he perked up and said 'Okay, come on, I'm going'. I think it was more the excitement of competing and returning to competition than believing in himself."

Speaking about the quarter-final, Toni Nadal said his brother in Australia told the family about the problems with the heat on court.

"He looked good. In the first two sets, he played at quite a good level against a tough opponent," he said.

"Everything changed as a result of heatstroke. We were watching the game with the family and at one point, after the second set, I said, 'well, I think this is done', and my brother in Australia said no, he's literally exhausted, and he'd told them he had had heatstroke."

Shapovalov lost his temper with umpire Carlos Bernardes during the match for refusing to give Nadal a time violation during a change of ends, proclaiming "You guys are all corrupt" before claiming post-match that players such as Nadal receive preferential treatment on court.

 

"I think he is totally wrong," said Toni. "When you have to change, you need time and the umpire normally looks at the players and sees the time and starts the clock later. He pressed too soon, realised it and that's why he gave Rafa more time.

"Young people sometimes act without thinking. How could an umpire be corrupt?"

Matteo Berrettini became the first Italian man to reach the Australian Open semi-finals after outlasting Gael Monfils on Tuesday.

Berrettini had appeared to be on course for a dominant victory, and although Monfils fought back to make it tough, the 25-year-old got the job done 6-4 6-4 3-6 3-6 6-2 in a gruelling encounter.

Monfils had an uphill struggle amid a sloppy start, with Berrettini breaking to love in the fifth game as the Frenchman committed two unforced errors and a double fault.

That proved to be the only opportunity Berrettini needed, and he subsequently had few issues seeing out the set from there, though Monfils initially appeared sharper early in the second.

An astonishing fourth game then left Monfils looking dejected as Berrettini somehow survived 10 deuces to hold serve after almost 20 minutes – the 25 points played here were almost half the first-set total (55).

Berrettini sensed the mood and went for the kill, losing just two points on serve before going on to close out the set to love.

A reaction did come, however. Monfils finally got his first break of serve as Berrettini's first double fault gifted him a lifeline, the 35-year-old then easing through the rest of the third set.

He kept that up in the fourth as well, with two huge forehand winners helping Monfils go a break up to take charge before ultimately levelling the match, but Berrettini had too much in the decider as he broke in the first game.

Berrettini raced into a 4-0 lead and, although Monfils did pull a couple of games back, the Italian was out of sight and clinched a deserved victory that saw him grab a slice of history.

DATA SLAM: Berrettini holds his nerve at the crucial moment

Having lost the previous two sets heading into the decider, it could have been very tempting for Berrettini to completely change up his game, but he remained very focused on accuracy and essentially letting Monfils shoot himself in the foot.

Berrettini made no double faults and just four unforced errors in the final set, compared to Monfils' combined total of 11, 10 of which came during rallies. The Italian won 80 per cent of his points on serve in the fifth and that mentality was crucial in outlasting his opponent.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS

Berrettini – 51/50

Monfils – 48/51

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS

Berrettini – 12/2

Monfils – 15/7

BREAK POINTS WON

Berrettini – 4/11

Monfils – 3/14

Rafael Nadal's happiness does not depend on finishing his career with more grand slam titles than rivals Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer.

Nadal edged out Denis Shapovalov in a five-set epic on Tuesday to reach the Australian Open semi-finals.

The Spaniard has only won the season's opening grand slam once, back in 2009. However, the field has opened up for him this year, with reigning champion Djokovic unable to compete and 40-year-old Federer taking his time to return from knee surgery.

Nadal, Djokovic and Federer are all tied on 20 grand slams each, meaning the next of the trio to win a major will set a new record.

While Nadal is hoping to go all the way in Melbourne, he insisted his career satisfaction does not depend on being the record holder.

"The fact that we are equal at 20, the only thing that says is that we share an amazing [time] of the history of our sport, and for me it's a real honour to be part of it, without a doubt," he said.

"I don't hope for anything. I just keep going. I am just enjoying playing tennis, as I said hundreds of times. Honestly, and from the bottom of my heart, I really don't [have certain expectations].

"Of course, I want to keep winning, but more than because I want to achieve or I want to have more than the others, because I love what I am doing. I want to keep doing this as long as possible.

 

"The last six months there have been a lot of doubts if I would be able to keep going. But now I feel good. We are in a position that I won a tournament, I'm in the semi-finals of the Australian Open, so that's amazing for me.

"In terms of what can happen in the future, honestly I really don't care that much. I don't believe that my happiness, my future happiness depends on if I achieve one more grand slam than the others or if the others achieve more grand slams than me.

"No, I am super satisfied and feel very lucky for all the things that happen to me. I have a way to approach life. You can't be always frustrated if the neighbour has a bigger house than you or a better phone or a better thing, no? I'm not going to be frustrated if Novak or Roger finishes their careers with more grand slams than me.

"Let's enjoy the situation, every one of us, we did very special things in our sport. Let's enjoy that."

Nadal lost to Djokovic in the Melbourne final in 2019. He has reached the showpiece match five times in total.

The world number five had not played a competitive game since August last year before he returned to action earlier this month, winning the Melbourne Summer Set.

Nadal had dropped just one set across the opening four rounds prior to his clash with Shapovalov, which finished 6-3 6-4 4-6 3-6 6-3.

"Yeah, I have been playing well," Nadal added. "To play at this level against a player like [Shapovalov], that he's one of the best players of the world, and see myself again competitive against these kinds of players, for me it's everything.

"I'm just enjoying every single moment, try my best playing with the highest positive attitude possible and with the right spirit."

Ash Barty was told how her backhand slice has been compared to that of Roger Federer, but the women's top seed at the Australian Open is not convinced.

Barty produced a stellar display as she saw off Jessica Pegula in Tuesday's quarter-final, losing just two games over the entire duel as the American proved no match.

Her victory sets up a semi-final clash with another American, Madison Keys, with Barty aiming to reach the final of her home grand slam for the first time.

Barty was ruthless against Pegula, firing 17 winners to her opponent's seven, while she won five of the nine break points available to her.

But it was her backhand slice – one of the most recognisable shots in the women's game today – that was particularly notable to four-time grand slam winner Jim Courier in commentary, who compared Barty in this respect to Federer.

Not that Barty was having any of it.

"That's very kind from Jim," Barty told reporters afterwards. "I think everyone's shots are unique.

"I think obviously Roger has one of the most exceptional slice backhands in the game. Mine's a long way off that. Absolutely, no stretch of the imagination we are even on the same page at all.

"But I love to use my slice, I love to get creative with it, to use it offensively and defensively. Over my career I've learnt it is a weapon for me.

"I try and use it when I have to. Sometimes I try and use it when it's my choice and I can be really, really aggressive with it.

"But being able to use it with variety and have different options has been a massive part of my game through this last couple of years of my career."

When Barty faces Keys in the semi-final, she will have already matched her personal best at the Australian Open – she also reached the last four in 2020.

But the combination of being world number one for over two years and having two grand slams under her belt is helping her maintain focus this time around.

"[It's] a bit of both. I think the process hasn't changed, but obviously the familiarity of knowing what to expect or expect how my body feels and almost be able to deal with those emotions a little bit better has probably changed and grown as I've become more experienced," she continued.

"But the processes for us haven't changed regardless of whether it's a first round of the tournament, latter stage of a grand slam, it doesn't actually matter the process before we walk out on court.

"But it's exciting, and I think also being able to embrace the excitement of being in with a chance to play deep in your home slam, it's pretty cool. I think going out there and enjoying that and really embracing that experience helps for sure."

Rafael Nadal shot down Denis Shapovalov's suggestion that he receives special treatment from umpires after an epic Australian Open quarter-final tussle.

Shapovalov fell short of an incredible comeback against the record-chasing Nadal, who prevailed 6-3 6-4 4-6 3-6 6-3 after over four hours of action on Rod Laver Arena.

The match was full of tension, with Shapovalov furious that Nadal escaped a time violation for taking too long between the first and second sets. 

After umpire Carlos Bernardes refused to call time on Nadal's changeover, Shapovalov lost his temper, bursting out: "You guys are all corrupt."

The players subsequently met at the net for a discussion, but Shapovalov was frustrated again when, before the deciding set, Nadal left the court for a medical timeout having struggled with a stomach issue, but then also had a toilet break.

Asked in his post-match news conference if he felt Nadal received preferential treatment, Shapovalov said: "Of course. 100 per cent he does. 100 per cent."

Shapovalov's comments were put to Nadal in the Spaniard's own media conference.

"No. Not in that case, no, no," Nadal responded.

"I really believe that on the court you don't deserve better treatment than the others. I really don't want it and I don't feel I have it.

"Without a doubt, even as everybody knows, I have a huge respect for Carlos and I think he's a great umpire. Is it not the case that he was always hard with me on court, no?

"I really believe that it's always in the mind that the top players get bigger advantages. And on the court it's not true. That's my feeling. I never feel that I had advantages on the court, and I really believe that he's wrong in that case.

 

"I honestly feel sorry for him. I think he played a great match for a long time. Of course, it's tough to accept to lose a match like this, especially after I was feeling destroyed and probably he felt that, [but] then I was able to manage to win the match.

"I wish him all the very best. He's young, I think we all make mistakes on our careers. I made a lot of mistakes too when I was younger, and probably he will understand later on after he thinks the proper way that probably he was not right today."

Nadal also explained why he had to be given an extended amount of time in the changeover between the first and second sets.

"I took some extra time at the end of the first set because I had to change everything there on the chair, in the changeover," he said.

"I think in that case normally at the end of the sets the umpire gives you some extra time, especially under these very humid conditions to change the clothes, because that's obvious that you can't play with the clothes in the condition that I was [in].

"I think in that moment Denis got p***** because the umpire called time and I needed like 30 seconds extra to keep changing my clothes.

"I think it's fair that Carlos gave me this extra time at that moment. I think Carlos made a small mistake in calling time. Normally at the end of the set, the umpire looks around and waits a little bit to call time until the player is a little bit ready when he's changing, no?

"Denis was wrong in that case. I understand that he just lost the set and in some way he wanted to keep playing quick, but I think he understands that normally you have some time to change your clothes."

Nadal improved his record in grand slam quarter-finals to 36-9. He is now 7-7 in Australian Open quarter-finals after surviving the Shapovalov battle, far worse than his record at the French Open (14-1), Wimbledon (7-0) and US Open (8-1).

Denis Shapovalov regrets labelling umpire Carlos Bernardes as "corrupt" but refused to relent on his view that Rafael Nadal "100 per cent" gets preferential treatment from officials.

Canadian Shapovalov fell short in a valiant comeback bid against all-time great Nadal, who eventually won through 6-3 6-4 4-6 3-6 6-3 after over four hours on Rod Laver Arena.

The 14th seed was left fuming between the first and set second, though, when he felt a time violation should have been given after Nadal made him wait for play to resume.

"Started the clock so long ago, he's still not ready to play. You've got to call him," Shapovalov said to Bernardes.

After Bernardes opted against doing so, Shapovalov said: "You guys are all corrupt."

"I think I misspoke when I said he's corrupt or whatever I said. It's definitely emotional, but I do stand by my side. I think it's unfair how much Rafa is getting away with," Shapovalov told a news conference when asked about the incident.

"I mean, I'm completely ready to play and the clock is ticking three, two, one, clicking towards zero, and I'm looking at the ump, and obviously I'm going to speak up and say something. 

"I've been ready to play for a minute and a half, and he tells me he's not going to give him a code violation because I'm not ready to play. To me, it's a big joke if somebody says that."

Shapovalov was further frustrated ahead of the deciding set where Nadal left the court for a medical check up having struggled with a stomach issue and also had a toilet break.

The 22-year-old felt the extended break quelled his growing momentum and that the elite players have different boundaries.

"And then after the fourth set, the guy goes – and for the same thing last year I wasn't allowed to take a toilet break when I asked for a medical," he added.

"He had already taken two medicals. He was getting medically evaluated, that's what the ump said after the fourth set, getting medically evaluated, and after the evaluation the guy goes and takes a toilet break.

"It's like, where is the line? Where are you going to step on the players and again, I respect everything that Rafa has done and I think he's an unbelievable player. 

"But there's got to be some boundaries, some rules set. It's just so frustrating as a player. You feel like you're not just playing against the player; you're playing against the umpires, you're playing against so much more.

"It's difficult. I mean, it was a big break after the fourth set for this reason, and the momentum just goes away. It's much more difficult to play, I think.

"Again, not trying to say anything against Rafa; he's a great player, I really respect all he's done, but I just think it's super difficult and super frustrating as an athlete to go up against all of this."

Asked if he feels Nadal gets preferential treatment, he added: "Of course. 100 per cent he does. 100 per cent. Every other match that I have played, the pace has been so quick because the refs have been on the clock after every single point.

"This one, after the first two sets it was like an hour and a half just because he's dragged out so much after every single point. He's given so much time in between sets and all this. It's just dragged out.

"Like I said, for the same reason I wasn't allowed to go to the washroom last year at the Australian Open because I had called a medical. I'm not arguing the fact that he had a medical or whatever it is. But how can you get evaluated medically and have a toilet break at the same break and just causing so much delay in the game?

"I mean, it's just not balanced."

Shapovalov and Nadal had a discussion at the net, but the former explained that it was an amicable exchange.

"It was nothing against Rafa. Rafa was serving and I would expect the umpire to be looking at Rafa and the umpire was staring me down. It didn't make sense to me," he said.

"Rafa is getting ready to serve, there's a clock right there, as an umpire you should be looking at the server. The guy is staring me down so I just looked at him like, 'Why are you looking at me?'

"It was shortly after I had said – obviously, like I said, I misspoke, but he was staring me down, so I felt like there was some feud or something. I looked at him.

"I was just explaining that to Rafa that it had nothing to do with him."

Nick Kyrgios is hoping to inspire the next generation of tennis stars after taking centre stage at the Australian Open with his run to the men's doubles semi-finals.

The 26-year-old fan favourite and partner Thanasi Kokkinakis downed sixth seeds Tim Puetz and Michael Venus 7-5 3-6 6-3 in Tuesday's quarter-final clash.

The contest was watched by a lively crowd on Kia Arena and overshadowed Rafael Nadal's five-set win over Denis Shapovalov on Rod Laver Arena at the same time.

Kyrgios and Kokkinakis, who were given a wildcard into the draw after being knocked out of the singles early on, will now face Marcel Granollers and Horacio Zeballos.

"I'm not finished – I want to win this f****** thing," Kyrgios declared in his on-court interview. "We know what we do well and it's world-class. 

"That's what we'll do again. I just want to play and give the people of Australia a show and genuinely grow the sport of tennis."

Kyrgios showed his caring side early in the match when handing a racket to a fan in the crowd after accidentally hitting the youngster with one of Kokkinakis' faulted balls.

The Australian public have embraced the pair's deep run in the competition and Kyrgios, often a controversial character, is glad to see so many younger spectators watching on.

"There is no way around it; me and Thanasi are definitely role models to the youth in Australia. We obviously attract that crowd," he said at his post-match news conference.

"I know that over the years I haven't been the best role model, but I was just learning how to deal with everything. 

"I think now at 26 I have matured, and I've definitely realised that a lot of young kids and people, even people that are low on confidence, they do look towards us.

"We are not special people. We're normal humans that you might see walking in Australia, and we are now in the semi-finals of a grand slam.

"I feel like I think we are just relatable. I think that's what's the best thing about it. They go out and get behind their mates. Most of the guys in the crowd are our mates.

"You've got Roger Federer and these guys that are just once-a-generation athletes. I can't be like that. We're not like that. I feel it has to be people that are a bit more relatable."

The Aussie pair's next opponents Granollers and Zeballos have won six tour-level titles as a team, but have never gone all the way at a grand slam.

Kokkinakis is hoping to have similar backing from the expectant home fans on Thursday.

Asked about the support he and his doubles partner have received so far, Kokkinakis said: "The rowdier the better. Sink p*** and come here.

"The next guys are experienced veterans, but we're going to keep playing how we play, have fun and enjoy the crowd."

Ash Barty was in clinical form to swat aside Jessica Pegula 6-2 6-0 in just 63 minutes and book her spot in the Australian Open semi-finals.

The world number one is still to drop a set at her home slam in Melbourne and made easy work of her opponent as Barty continued her bid to become the first female Australian singles champion since Chris O'Neil in 1978.

Barty won nine games in a row from 3-2 up in the first set to take complete command and she can now prepare for a semi-final showdown with another American in the form of Madison Keys.

A nervy-looking Pegula was rushing her shots in the early exchanges and Barty broke in the first game when a forehand cross set up a break point chance that her opponent put into the net.

Barty had chalked up 12 unforced errors by game four, but it was her aggressive tactics that had Pegula completely on the ropes and when a thumping forehand set up another break point in game seven, it was little surprise when it was converted.

By this point Barty was in complete command and Pegula had no answer to the variety of shots her opponent rained down on her.

The second set raced by in just 28 minutes, with Barty putting the finishing touch on a mightily impressive performance when Pegula put a return long on the second match point.

"Jess is an incredible person and a brilliant girl. I love to test myself against her. She's had sensational couple of years, she's definitely a top-20 player, there's plenty more to come for sure," Barty said after the match.

On reaching the semis in Melbourne for the second time after doing so in 2020, she added: "I've grown as a person, as a player, I'm a more complete tennis player.

"Credit to my team, they do so much work behind the scenes to make me the best version of myself, I love playing out here. Hopefully I've got a little bit more left."

DATA SLAM: Barty serves up a treat again

Barty defeated both Pegula and Keys en route to winning her maiden slam title at the 2019 French Open and history could be repeating itself here with the world number one playing arguably the best tennis of her career.

Behind her dominance is phenomenal success on serve. Barty is still yet to drop a set in Melbourne, and went 63 games without being broken before Amanda Anisimova did so in the previous round. Here, she lost just five points on first serve (22 of 27, 81 per cent) and gave up just a solitary break-point opportunity in the match.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS

Barty – 17/22
Pegula – 7/26

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS

Barty – 6/2
Pegula – 1/3

BREAK POINTS WON

Barty – 5/9
Pegula – 0/1

Rafael Nadal survived a huge scare to reach the Australian Open semi-finals with an enthralling five-set win over Denis Shapovalov on Tuesday.

Nadal is two wins away from a record-breaking 21st grand slam title after enduring a four-hour epic to beat Shapovalov 6-3 6-4 4-6 3-6 6-3 on Rod Laver Arena.

A year after losing from two-sets-to-love up at the same stage to Stefanos Tsitsipas, there was almost a repeat for Nadal.

But, seemingly battling a stomach issue, the Spaniard remained alive in his bid to set the outright record for most grand slams won by a man, following a thrilling battle that lasted four hours, eight minutes.

The success saw Nadal – who will face either Matteo Berrettini or Gael Monfils in the last four – reach his 36th career grand slam semi-final and seventh at Melbourne Park, where he claimed the title in 2009.

Nadal landed the first blow with a break to love in the fourth game.

A superb forehand winner down the line got Nadal going before three wild forehands in a row from Shapovalov saw him fall 3-1 behind.

Shapovalov was unable to make any inroads against the Nadal serve, winning just five return points in a 39-minute opening set.

The Canadian was angry with chair umpire Carlos Bernardes' decision not to give Nadal a time violation between sets and the players unusually met at the net before the second game of the second set.

Nadal needed a tough hold during a 12-point sixth game and he capitalised in the next, an overhead securing the break after Shapovalov had sent a forehand well long at 30-30 to end a point he had been in complete control of.

Nadal closed out the set, but found trouble in the sixth game of the third as he faced break points for the first time after a double fault.

After saving both and holding serve, Nadal was broken at the key time – when serving to stay in the set – as Shapovalov delivered a backhand cross-court winner to extend the contest.

The momentum had well and truly swung and a double fault from Nadal saw Shapovalov break for 3-1 in the fourth set.

Approaching the three-hour mark, Nadal required a medical timeout, seemingly suggesting an issue with his stomach.

Shapovalov found himself in some trouble trying to level the match, but recovered from 15-40 to force a fifth set.

Nadal – who had been beaten from two-sets-to-love up just twice previously in his grand slam career – had to save a break point in the opening game of the decider, a volley winner to hold drawing huge cheers from the Rod Laver Arena crowd.

Instead, Shapovalov played a loose game, two wayward forehands, a double fault and a framed backhand giving Nadal a break and 2-0 lead.

Nadal, looking far more energetic, saved two break points in the third game before becoming more comfortable on serve on his way to the last four, Shapovalov smashing his racquet after match point.

 

DATA SLAM: Nadal overcomes major Melbourne hurdle … just

Nadal improved his record in grand slam quarter-finals to 36-9, but the last eight has often been a problem in Melbourne during his incredible career.

He is now 7-7 in Australian Open quarter-finals after surviving the Shapovalov battle, far worse than his record at the French Open (14-1), Wimbledon (7-0) and US Open (8-1).

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Nadal – 41/28
Shapovalov – 53/51

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Nadal – 8/11
Shapovalov – 20/5

BREAK POINTS WON
Nadal – 3/7
Shapovalov – 2/8

Denis Shapovalov hit out at chair umpire Carlos Bernardes in an extraordinary outburst during his Australian Open clash against Rafael Nadal.

Shapovalov was furious with Bernardes' decision not to call a time violation against Nadal after the Spaniard left him waiting between the first and second sets on Rod Laver Arena on Tuesday.

Nadal had taken the first set 6-3, but forced the Canadian 14th seed to wait before he could serve to start the second.

"Started the clock so long ago, he's still not ready to play. You've got to call him," Shapovalov said to Bernardes.

After Bernardes opted against doing so, Shapovalov said: "You guys are all corrupt."

Nadal and Shapovalov met at the net between the first and second games of the set in a brief discussion that eased the tension.

After Nadal led 6-3 6-4, Shapovalov hit back to take the third set 6-4 on a hot day in Melbourne.

Madison Keys is enjoying being the underdog after moving into the Australian Open semi-finals on Tuesday.

The American was too good for Czech fourth seed Barbora Krejcikova 6-3 6-2 in their quarter-final, played on a warm day in Melbourne.

Keys reached her fifth career grand slam semi-final, but first since the 2018 US Open.

Riding a 10-match winning streak after claiming just 11 victories in all of 2021, Keys is staying focused as her run continues in Australia.

"I honestly feel pretty neutral, to be completely honest with you. I have gone into every match thinking I can absolutely win any match that I'm out on the court," she said.

"I will say it's been kind of nice to be the underdog for the first time in a long time.

"It's really just not even in my head about winning and losing. It's really just going out, competing, trying to do what the game plan is.

"If that's not working going to Plan B. The rest is kind of not even getting into my brain."

The heat on Rod Laver Arena seemed to get to Krejcikova, the French Open champion taking a medical timeout late in the first set.

Krejcikova said she would learn a lot from her run after struggling with the heat on Tuesday.

"Today it was the heat with some physical conditions that started to bother me during after five games. I mean, from there on, you know, I just couldn't put it together," she said.

"Just still I didn't want to end it up. I wanted to finish match. I wanted to try to do my best. Yeah, I wasn't really able to do that. Still I think it's a really good experience and I can learn a lot from it."

Keys will play either Ash Barty or Jessica Pegula in the last four.

Madison Keys moved into her first grand slam semi-final since 2018 with a straight-sets win over Barbora Krejcikova at the Australian Open.

Keys overcame Czech fourth seed Krejcikova 6-3 6-2 in hot conditions on Rod Laver Arena on Tuesday.

After a hard-fought 50-minute first set, Keys handled the heat the better of the two, closing out a deserved victory.

The win booked Keys a first major semi-final since the 2018 US Open and fifth of her career, with either Ash Barty or Jessica Pegula awaiting her.

After claiming just 11 match victories in 2021, Keys is on a 10-match winning streak, although she was challenged by Krejcikova, particularly early on.

A pair of break points went begging for Keys in the second game before she dug herself out of a 15-40 hole to hold for 2-1.

Keys held after a gruelling 18-point fifth game, one which looked set to be hugely important, after saving four break points.

Another lengthy game followed as opportunities, this time for Keys, came and went before Krejcikova sent a forehand wide to hand the American a 4-2 lead.

Krejcikova took a medical timeout at 2-5, but there was no stopping Keys taking the first set in 50 minutes.

The unforced errors continued to come from Krejcikova and a tame backhand into the net handed Keys a break in the opening game of the second set.

Looking increasingly weary, Krejcikova was broken to love in the third game, although the French Open champion did get one of those breaks back immediately.

Krejcikova continued to fight, but Keys powered away, breaking for 5-2 on her way to the last four.

 

DATA SLAM: Keys lands top-five win

Keys, the 2017 US Open runner-up, held an 8-20 record against top-five ranked opponents, and 2-6 at grand slams, heading into her meeting with Krejcikova.

The American at least improved that record and deservedly so, getting the better of Krejcikova.

WINNERS/UNFORCED ERRORS
Keys – 27/21
Krejcikova – 12/28

ACES/DOUBLE FAULTS
Keys – 11/1
Krejcikova – 2/4

BREAK POINTS WON
Keys – 4/12
Krejcikova – 1/8

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