Misc Tennis

Sinner ends Djokovic’s reign in Australian Open semifinals

Sinner ends Djokovic's reign in Australian Open semifinals

MELBOURNE, Australia — Jannik Sinner ended one of Novak Djokovic‘s perfect streaks in an Australian Open upset and then got to relax while Daniil Medvedev rallied from two sets down to beat Alexander Zverev after midnight to secure the other place in the final.

For a self-described tennis fan, everything went Sinner’s way in the semifinals Friday.

The 22-year-old from Italy broke Djokovic’s serve twice in each of the first two sets in a surprisingly lopsided 6-1, 6-2, 6-7 (6), 6-3 victory that ended the 10-time champion’s unbeaten streak in semifinals at Rod Laver Arena.

Almost an hour after missing a match point in the tiebreaker, Sinner converted his second to complete his third win in four head-to-heads since losing to Djokovic in last year’s Wimbledon semifinals.

“I learned a lot from that,” he said of that Wimbledon loss and his subsequent wins. “It gives you a better feeling when you know that you can beat one player.

“The confidence from the end of last year has for sure kept the belief.”

Third-seeded Medvedev appeared down and out after two sets, and was two points from losing in the fourth, but rallied to beat Zverev 5-7, 3-6, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5), 6-3 after 4 hours, 18 minutes.

“I was a little bit lost, but during the third set I started saying ‘If I lose this match, I just want to be proud of myself,'” said Medvedev, who has lost two finals in Australia, including one from two sets up. “I’m proud of myself.”

Zverev’s run drew attention on and off the court after news emerged that a German court set a trial date in May over an assault allegation dating to 2020. The Olympic gold medalist has denied the accusations since last July when details of the case became public.

After winning the first two sets, Zverev got within a couple of swings of the racket of making a second Grand Slam final. Instead it will be Medvedev, the 2021 US Open champion whose run here included a grueling second-round win that finished at almost 4 in the morning, who will be aiming for a second major title.

Sinner will be the youngest player to contest the men’s final in Australia since Djokovic won the first of his 10 titles in 2008.

A record-extending 11th Australian and 25th major title overall will have to wait for Djokovic.

He hadn’t lost a match at Melbourne Park since a fourth-round exit in 2018, had never lost after reaching the final four, and was on a 33-match winning streak at the season’s first major.

“He’s deservedly in the…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at www.espn.com – TENNISโ€ฆ