The first Quarterfinal of the Australian Open 2021 offers yet another and quite incredible big surprise. The Russian Aslan Karatsev, number 114 in the world, beats Grigor Dimitrov and sensationally reaches the semi-finals of a Grand Slam.
A totally unexpected name with Karatsev rewriting the record book by being the first player in history to reach the semi-finals of a Grand Slam on his first participation. Karatsev is also the first Russian to reach the semifinals here in Melbourne since 2005, since the time of Marat Safin, waiting for the other who will surely come out of the derby between Medvedev and Rublev.
What is surprising is the umpteenth injury of this tournament with Dimitrov who, due to lumbago, is practically forced to stop, giving up or almost giving up playing the last two sets of the tournament. There were great expectations for the Bulgarian, especially after the beautiful victory in the previous round over world number 3 Dominic Thiem, who arrived a few days ago with the result of 6-4; 6-4; 6-0.
After the victory in the first round which came clearly over our Gianluca Mager, Karatsev achieved increasingly interesting results and first knocked down Diego Schwartzman, then in the Round of 16 he won a great match in the fifth set on the Canadian talent Felix Auger Aliassime and today he closed with a flourish.
winning a result that no one would have predicted at the start of the match. After an initial break immediately in the third game Dimitrov starts strong and makes 5 consecutive games showing quite clearly a superiority. The first set ends 6-2, but Karatsev does not give up and after having canceled several break points in the second game, he faces a break and counterbreak during the set that closes using the second break point in the ninth game and thus closing at 6-4.
From now on there was practically no more competition with Dimitrov who, due to physical problems, continued to play despite obvious physical problems and with Karatsev who, game after game, deservedly took this great opportunity.
Australian Open 2021: Serena Williams and Osaka in a super-semifinal!
After two years, UA champion and star Serena Williams finds Simona Halep and completely changes the ending at the Australian Open 2021. The very American champion, who plays a game of quality and above all of quantity, wins after just over sixty minutes with a double 6-3 and fits into Naomi Osaka's segment of the board.
It will be among other things the rematch of the Flushing Meadows final dated 2018. To add the twenty-fourth Slama pearl to the series of successes, it is likely that Serena will have to beat the top three players in the world.
Tactically, but also technically, the Romanian interprets the first fraction in a negative way. Especially since she can't find the spaces - and ways - to move the game sideways. Serena absorbs the situation, she does not immediately keep the advantage that she hooks on 2-0, but re-establishes the hierarchy during the sixth game and leaves just two points on the road with the service available in the next two serving rounds.
Thanks to the massive contribution of the US champion - who misses everything there is to be wrong - the world number two still manages to put her head ahead at 2-0 and then at 3-1. By squandering the available advantage in both cases.
Serena, who is growing, does not take advantage of the first five break points she has available during the seventh game, but with an extraordinary defense forces the Romanian to make a rather trivial mistake. Just the ninth of the game.
After an ace, the American applies the straight serve scheme to perfection and considerably files the number of baseline errors by forcing herself to 5-3. Called to serve to stay in the match, Halep completely disconnects the plug.
Su Wei Hsieh's wonderful Australian tale comes to a close in the quarter-finals. The sixth direct confrontation with Naomi Osaka - who on four occasions had at least dragged to the third set - turns out to be poor in twists.
The tennis player from Taipei fails to give unpredictability to the game and above all to create the conditions to win points on the first opponent. The final 2/25 tells pretty much everything. Osaka, who interprets prolonged exchanges in a practically perfect way, after a game of fourteen points (which gives the 4-1) splashes on 6-2 3-0 without particular difficulties.
The rest - leading to 6-2 6-2 - is a completely necessary side dish. For the Japanese it will be the fourth Grand Slam semi-final in her career: three victories in the booty.