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Miner Willy
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Yeah, but isn't Osaka scheduled to meet Barty early? That should be a final really.

 

Agree: Medvedev Vs Kyrgios is another fantastic one. I assume Medvedev will grind him down eventually, but with some fun along the way. 

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10 hours ago, milko said:

It’s way too early to know how far she can go, right? Today was the first time she’s played a three set match on the WTA tour or something crazy like that - she didn’t lose a set in the entire US Open + qualifying, and in the very few matches she’s played since, she’s been beaten in two. Stephens sounds like she didn’t get great prep for this tournament either, but that’s still a pretty big scalp in the first round of a grand slam. 

 

While it is of course too early, her US Open win was, as far as I know, unprecedented: winning as a qualifier, not dropping a set in 10 matches, winning a slam without ever playing a regular WTA tour level match, and maybe other things I'm forgetting. And all of it staying cool and collected and playing even within herself at times, rather than winning matches playing in a less sustainable way. There's certainly a very solid foundation for the hype: she absolutely has the makings of an all-time great. Obviously no one can say whether or not she will fulfill that; women's tennis is hardly short of examples where early promise faded.

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13 hours ago, milko said:


It’s way too early to know how far she can go, right? Today was the first time she’s played a three set match on the WTA tour or something crazy like that - she didn’t lose a set in the entire US Open + qualifying, and in the very few matches she’s played since, she’s been beaten in two. Stephens sounds like she didn’t get great prep for this tournament either, but that’s still a pretty big scalp in the first round of a grand slam. 

 

It's the first time she's played three sets at a Grand Slam, not on the tour itself - she has been beaten in three sets twice in her six matches sandwiched between the US Open and yesterday. 

 

It's still too early, of course, you can't judge on just six matches, particularly not after an unprecedented slam victory and everything that comes with that. 

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Bit of a disappointing day on the British player front! Sure, Evans is through but only on a walkover (and, while I do like him, I think it's clear that his game is too limited to ever trouble the later stages of a slam).

 

Hard to know exactly how much Raducanu's hand injury was restricting her but it seemed pretty significant on the forehand and that it was a very determined performance to come as close as she did to scraping through, relying pretty much entirely on her phenomenal backhand at times. Unlucky really - feel like she had a lot more to bring if she could have kept the run going.

 

Another disappointing exit for Murray. I didn't watch it all but it seemed a bit similar to the fairly low energy, slightly dejected performance against Shapovalov at Wimbledon, except a less accomplished (if evidently very confident) opponent this time. I'm sure we'll see him at Wimbledon again at the very least but I wonder how much longer his supply of wildcards is going to last.

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I didn't see any of Murray, but yeah, very disappointing. On paper this looked like one he might roll through and build some real momentum.

 

I turned on Raducanu at the end of the second set and was pretty confused to see her slicing her forehand and running round to hit backhands. Strange match, but I think she comes out with credit for the way she was able to win points with such intelligence and variety. Ultimately it rather came down to the short forehand which she didn't put away at 2-3 final set, just after breaking. If she'd got that I still felt she could go on to win.

 

Excited for Alcaraz/Berrettini tomorrow. Also curious to see Monfils - he's looking very good and strangely reliable.

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4 hours ago, Miner Willy said:

I turned on Raducanu at the end of the second set and was pretty confused to see her slicing her forehand and running round to hit backhands. Strange match, but I think she comes out with credit for the way she was able to win points with such intelligence and variety. Ultimately it rather came down to the short forehand which she didn't put away at 2-3 final set, just after breaking. If she'd got that I still felt she could go on to win.

 

 

Raducanu blew her opponent away, then lost multiple games in a row when her blister got worse. It was kind of weird seeing her adapt entirely, then just occasionally throw a giant forehand in to screw with her opponent.

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Several of us have said we can't see Nadal winning here, but he was incredibly good today, at least in the first set and a bit that I saw. If he's playing like that then it's going to take a great performance from one of the big names to take him out. 

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Wow, Shapovalov taking out Zverev in straight sets is a shock - but for me a very welcome one. 

 

Doubtless very welcome for Nadal too. Shapo has played well against him in the past, but for sure Nadal now has a more straightforward route to the semis than if he'd met Zverev, who I think would have been a strong favourite.

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Zed going out definitely helps Rafa but Shapovalov is no joke, he’s beaten Rafa on hard previously, and he still potentially has Berritini and Medvedev to get through, by far he’s got the hardest draw of all the other players. I’ll be fucking partying if he somehow manages it though!

 

Smart money would still

put Medvedev as favourite. 

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Yeah, Medvedev absolutely the favourite, but it's very much open.

 

Any of those guys could come through the top half - you have to say that includes Monfils, who I think is still to drop a set, and arguably the player of the tournament so far. 

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Been enjoying the open. Kygrios' closing games to get the third set against Medvedev were utterly fucking awesome. I mean, the levels went up.

 

Gutted Novak's not in, but seeing Nadal kill it's been great. 

 

 

The point at 0:17 is, f'ing peak athleticism. Fucking crazy.

 

Anyway, mad Shapovalov's taking Zverev in straights is mad; have to check the highlights now.

 

The final's gonna be ace.

 

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I only saw the final set, which was after it had all blown over. I really enjoyed the final set - Nadal got out of jail on that volley off the net cord.

 

Loving Berrettin vs. Monfils. Both guys playing brilliantly, and some insane rallies. Would love to see Monfils win this, but Berrettini's serve is just monstrous.

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This is now inevitably going the way we all expected - not least with AA now needing treatment - but what an incredible match. Best of the tournament so far?

 

Medvedev just has that temperament now: the certainty that it's still his for the taking even at 2-0 down, that he's always got another gear to find - exactly what we've seen from the top 3 for so long but that all of the other potential successors have failed to find.

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I only saw the final set, but that was pretty good. Not sure it was better than Berrettini Vs Monfils though.

 

Yeah, definitely feel like Medvedev has that internal belief. He doesn't look like he feels he should lose to these guys, even if he gets down. I assume he goes to no.1 if he wins here, and he's looking like the best player in the world, on hard courts anyway. 

 

Looking forward to Nadal Vs Berrettini tomorrow. I generally don't like the chances of any right hander with a less strong backhand side when playing against Rafa, but he does have that serve, and Nadal may not be 100%. Could be an interesting one.

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The final set was actually nowhere near the standard of the rest! AA was spent - and injured - by that point. Somewhere around set 3 they were both playing more or less perfect tennis at 100% effort and it was pretty extraordinary stuff. Not that I saw the B v M match to compare directly, to be fair.

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I don't want to take anything away from how good Barty is, but it feels a bit like she's going to win this by default. Everyone has just crumbled in front of her.

 

... though if Collins can reproduce anything approaching today's performance in the final then we should have a match on our hands at least!

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Well, Rafa sowed that up too quickly for me to even see a point. We probably shouldn't be surprised by anything these guys do these days, but still: reaching the final here is a fantastic achievement. It's looking like a mouthwatering semi and final, whoever gets there.

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Man missed what seems to be the best Australian open in years as on holiday. 3 of 4 quarter finals went five sets and now Rafa has made the final an amazing achievement. If he manages to win I’ll be delighted but I expect Medvedev to not be turned over easily and fight to the end and probably win. I hope it’s a good match regardless and at least I’ll be able to watch this one! Vamos!

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It's by far the worst slam for actually catching much of it! I think that both finals should be happening late enough though.

 

Certainly can't deny that the two best players are in the mens final. I'd love to see Nadal do it but Medvedev is playing at such a consistently high level, with the kind of more or less unlimited physical reserves that Nadal doesn't quite possess any longer, that I suspect it's going that way. That said, it's going to be good fun getting to wherever it ends up, I expect, and I wouldn't be surprised to see some more Medvedev tantrums, if he managed to get so wound up in a fairly comprehensive victory over Tsitsipas!

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Yeah, on the men's side at least this has been a brilliant slam - so many great matches. He's a million miles from the sort of players I usually like, but I can't help but love Medvedev - even his ridiculously ugly but effective forehand. I thought Tsitsipas played a very smart first two sets, but you always felt that Medvedev would grind him down in the end.

 

I make Medvedev the favourite on Sunday, but not an overly strong one. Nadal has done so well to get this far, and you can never write him off. You just know he's going to play brilliantly and Medvedev will have to go through it to win. I can't see him blowing Nadal away in straight sets like he did with Djokovic at the US.

 

BTW, I loved the snippets of Nadal's press conference that I saw earlier. Journos asking him about going for 21, and Nadal typically focused and humble, basically saying that winning a slam is the pinnacle; for him it's about having the chance to lift the trophy, not the number. I'll support Medvedev, but even as a huge Fed fan I would be happy seeing Nadal win here - the guy's incredible. (And he's not Djokovic).

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