Federer Fights Past Millman At Australian Open, Tsitsipas Tsent Off; Aussies Face Russians
by Staff | January 24th, 2020, 10:18 am
  • 48 Comments

Novak Djokovic kept rolling in his title defense at the Australian Open. The 7-time tournament champion routed an overmatched Yoshihito Nishioka 6-3, 6-2, 6-2 in just under 90 minutes of play.

”Definitely one of the best serving matches I’ve had lately, inspired by my coach, Goran Ivanisevic,” said Djokovic who lost just eight points on serve. “There are a lot of technical details you can talk about, but sometimes less is more. It’s all about the rhythm and balance… So far, it’s been working really well.”

While Djokovic was enjoying his day, a few of his rivals were not.

Roger Federer dropped the opener in his rematch with Australian John Millman who beat the Swiss at the US Open in 2018. Federer came back in the second set in a break and then gained control with the third set.

But Millman got a break in the fourth for 4-3, then got out of a 0-30 hole.

In the decider, Millman got up a break early and of the two, he looked fresher. But the Swiss responded getting back to level. As the tension rose, the two forced the first final set breaker on Rod Laver.

Millman got out early as Federer failed to find the mark. The 30-year-old looked solid and in command, and built what appeared to be an insurmountable 8-4 lead. Except… The Australian 30-year-old wouldn’t win another point.

Federer scratched his way back winning the last six points of the match, culminating on guessing right to redirect a Millman smash to the open court for a match-ending winner.

Federer took it 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-4, 4-6, 7-6(8) in just over four hours.

“Oh God that was tough,” an exhausted Federer told the crowd just before 1am. “Thank God it was super tiebreak otherwise I would have lost this one.

“I think John played a great match, he’s a great fighter, a good guy and it came down to the wire at the end.

“I was getting ready to explain myself in the press conference. The demons are always there. They are lurking. Anyway, what a match and John deserves over half of this one.”

The puts Federer into the 16s and earns him his 100th career match win at the Australian Open.

In a match of previous semifinalists, Milos Raonic knocked out Stefanos Tsitsipas in three sets 7-5, 6-4, 7-6(2) without dropping serve while cracking 19 aces.

“Today was an incredible match for me,” said Raonic who never faced a break point. “I was very happy with how things went. I enjoy the energy of playing on this court and it’s great to be healthy and playing well. I can take a lot of pleasure in this win.”

Former finalist Marin Cilic went five sets for a second straight match, this time topping a tough Roberto Bautista Agut 6-7(3), 6-4, 6-0, 5-7, 6-3 to reach his third straight Australian Open third round. Cilic now gets Raonic.

“I had an incredible patch,” said Cilic. “It was just a surreal level. Every ball I was hitting was going in. It was coming off my racquet incredibly well. I knew Roberto would always fight and he pushed me all the way in the fourth set.”

Next for Novak is Diego Schwartzman who held off his countryman Dusan Lajovic 6-2, 6-3, 7-6(7).

“He’s one of the quickest players on Tour,” Djokovic said of the Argentine. “Hopefully my serve can be as good as it was today, or at least close, because then I feel that I have a pretty good chance. I’ve got to be patient, but still aggressive.”

Added Schwartzman, “Nole is a big player, a legend of our sport,” he said. “I’m just thinking to recover well and be ready for Sunday.”

2018 quarterfinalist Tennys Sandgren is back in the fourth round after dismissing Sam Querrey 6-4, 6-4, 6-4. And Marton Fucsovics also returned to this stage overwhelming a weary 22-year-old Tommy Paul.

Fabio Fognini advanced in easy fashion over Guido Pella in the evening. Fognini will meet Sandgren.

On Saturday, Rafael Nadal will challenge countryman Pablo Carreno Busta. Daniil Medevedev meets young Australian Alexei Popyrin and his in another AUS-RUS affair, Nick Kyrgos takes on the big Karen Khachanov in a good one.


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48 Comments for Federer Fights Past Millman At Australian Open, Tsitsipas Tsent Off; Aussies Face Russians

Daniel Says:

Think Djoko x Federer semis is inevitable now. Can not see Djoko losing to Schwatz neither Raonic (who is just finding his mojo again) nor Cilic (who is not on top gear as 2-3 years ago).
Federer maybe can lose to Fucsovics if he is on top form and Federer a bit tired, but he won’t lose to Fognini nor Sandgren if he reaches QF, no way, not with what is at stake late in a Slam and potentially Djoko in semis.

So, if Fed passes Fucsovics (the only danger I see now due to this 4 hour match), as he should on paper, and preferably in 4 or less, the blockbuster Djoko x Fed has a 95% chance happening.

Aldo curious to see tonight if we are gonna have the first blockbuster match in Nadal and Kyrgios R16. This match, sunday night can be epic if the crowds is pro Kyrgios and he shows up to play.


Daniel Says:

Raonic won all three matches in straights and he has that serve and high ace count on these courts. Could be a treat, but somehow if he plays Djoko QF, with Djoko’s return can’t seem him winnign. Djoko has a 9-0 HxH agaisnt him hardly losing sets.


NachoF Says:

Djoko-Fed semi-final will be, once again, a frustrating, embarrassing display.

We all know it :(


Dave Says:

@Daniel,

I wouldn’t sleep on Sandgren or Fucsovics. Everyone saw what happened today. Federer has bigtime endurance issues. It’s as simple as that. He was running on fumes and it was only 2 and a half hours into the match. At 38.5 years old, he will not be at 100% even if he gets to Djokovic. That was a seriously physical match that went over 4 hours. I’m actually puzzled at how quickly Federer went down physically. Millman at times let him off the hook. AS well as he played, he really missed some easy returns and rally shots at points when he had a chance to just finish it off and not let go. And you could see by his reaction after losing some of these points that he knew that. I really can’t remember Federer slowing down to this degree in a match because of endurance fatigue without it being something else, like the crazy humidity against Millman in the 2018 US OPen. This was different though. I’m honestly really surprised.


Moi Says:

8-4 lead?


Daniel Says:

Dave,

Don’t know, maybe was just that off day that comes once and a while. several part of his game were there and Millamn was playng really well only pulling the trigger when he had a good shot. Majority he was just returning same direction as the ball came and deep. Next 2 rounds opponents may fold as we saw many times agaisnt Federer before and he can serve a bit better. With a day rest he can recover, as long as he can avoid long matches. This is not 2017 when he played two 5 setters before that epic with Nadal.

Still think if he gets to Djoko he can make a match out of it. He won that last WTF match ending Djoko’s hopes of #1 when Djoko was super hungry for that record, even with those Wimbledon MPs on his mind, and he beat him convincingly. Djoko is on a row now and the favortite agaisnt anyone he plays, but may play long draining match with Schwartz next and depending on Raonic / Cilic serving, lose a set also.

While Fed has mental fragile opponents on his way, Fucsov and than Snadgreen / Foggy.

I am more worried about next match with Fucsovics due to direct impact of the match today than QF. Djoko semis is still far ahead and his chances will depend on how he plays next 2 rounds and if Djoko also has any strugle on the way.


Madmax Says:

Daniel,

I watched the match against Millman and I can tell you Fed was hopping around like a bunny. It was as if he was as fresh as a pup. Unbelievable energy against an incredibly strong player. I was so proud of this man. Not only that, he pulled it out of the bag at the end.

This man is in it to win it. Just now the AO have posted a 3 minute clip of Roger’s successes over here at the AO since 2004. It’s so fabulous to see him playing each tournament against players no longer on the tour, such is his resilience and longevity.

Here you go.

https://video.eurosport.com/tennis/grand-slam-journey-roger-federer-talks-through-the-ultra-special-moments-of-his-career_vid1285133/video.shtml

Amazing Federer.


Dave Says:

I was thinking the same thing about the two 5 setters before Nadal in the Final. He can’t pull that off again. And those 5 setters were shorter in length if I recall.


Dave Says:

I watched the match to and definitely saw it differently. The commentators kept bringing it up. He looked gassed at times and was pulling out of rallies ending the points.


Truth Says:

Fred barely escaped but Millman isn’t much of a competitor except for the 1 us open. Millman hardly played Slam matches in the last 3 years & choked badly. Fred isn’t enjoying another horrific opponent meltdown (emotional midget). If he gets past Fucsovics, he will lose badly and boringly. Frauderror had too many awful Slam matches and lucky trophies when Novak completely disappeared.
These media sleazeballs always pretend that he had so much misfortune. LOL


Dave Says:

Daniel,

I did some digging into the 2017 Australian Open for Federer. And it was definitely a different scenario than 2020. He played a 5 set match against Nishikori in the 4th round and it was only 3 hours and 24 minutes. He played a 5 setter against Wawrinka in the Semi-Finals and it was only 3 hours and 5 minutes. Plus they played on Thursday, So Federer had 3 days between matches with the extra day of rest. And of course he was 3 years younger. This was a 3rd round match that was 4 hours and 3 minutes and he won’t get the extra day of rest before a potential match with Djokovic. So basically he will need to get through these next few matches in straight sets or a faster paced 4 set match. No more 3 hour plus matches before the SF’s. Djokovic has it easy from a physical standpoint in the QF’s. Cilic has just played back to back 5 setters. So if he somehow makes it through I don’t see him having a lot left. If Raonic gets through there won’t be a lot of long rallies in that match. So Diego is going to most likely be the physical test for DJokovic before the potential Federer match.


Wog Boy Says:

Dave , I watched match too, you are right, when was the last time 38 years old made 82 UE and he played #47 in the world.
If it was match on normal Melbourne temperature and humidity he would have lost, but it is unusually cold weather for this time of the year, last night was 17-18 degrees, that’s winter temperature.
Regardless, I don’t see him losing before SF, same as I am not sure Nole will make SF.
Cilic and particularly Raonic played lights out. Raonic just didn’t put foot wrong, he didn’t give any rhythm to Tsitsipas whatsoever.


Wog Boy Says:

I wonder how the are going to schedule Nole and him tomorrow, so far, Nole played 2 day matches and he played 1?


Wog Boy Says:

Dave, don’t forget that in that final against Cilic they closed the roof switched AC ON For absolutely no reason but to give advantage to 38 year old.
I still remember that Sunday lunch time seeing Cilic on TV slugging it out on outside court on hot Melbourne sun preparing for evening match, one hour later they showed 38 year old practicing in MCA with roof closed and AC fully on, why would you do that unless you knew roof is going to be closed.
That’s the only final I haven’t watched, I took my wife for the concert that after seeing their practice on the TV, she didn’t object.


Paco Says:

If 38 years old arrives to the semis Novak will put him to rest in straights like he did a couple years ago.


Daniel Says:

Agree Dave, that’s why I pointed that this time is no 2017. He is 3 years older and 2017 he was out for 6 months. As it was proven that rest instead of damaging his game gave him extra boost as he did not face a long full season.

I can’t see a long match with Fucso who is an attacking player. Even if that goes 5 will be 3 hours. Diffent dynamics. And unless Foggy decided to make another Nadal USO like performance that match won’t be that grindiing either.

There is a few lot of active players who can drag Federer into long rallies again and again: Nadal, Djoko, Thiem, Millman, Coric, old Murray, old Simon, maybe Medveded but they haven’t play that much.


Daniel Says:

Missed Goffin, can recall anybody else by head.


skeezer Says:

“…when was the last time 38 years old made 82 UE and he played #47 in the world.”
Yep half of his FH’s he hit were errors! Ugh! BUT…..he still came through against a top 50 player @38 yrs old. The guy is a gamer, no doubt.
Djoker on the other hadn’t got to play #797 in the world. Life is good when you have special privileges, no? ;)


Wog Boy Says:

Sure, first round Struff, #37 in world, was playing lights out, took set from Nole. I was there.
38 years old played 2 first indoor matches and last night for the first time I remember he had fans against him, that rattled him, try to imagine how many titles he would have if he had to face fans like Nole?!


mira pajic Says:

wog boy why u alweys fake pretending that u not believe in novak and saying u think djokovic will not win…or go to semifinal…u trying to anty jinx him..by the way kosovo je metohija majku li ti jebem onu ustashku u picku


Wog Boy Says:

As I thought, Nole is playing 3rd match out of four daytime on Sunday.
38 years old is playing his 3rd match in a row night time, nice and cool weather for the senior citizen.


Batman_ Says:

Federer gets preferential treatment at Oz open year after year.

Media where are you?

I believe in 2017 he played one day match out if 7.

It’s nice if you get to play someone who battled it out at 40 degrees Celsius while you play in nice cool night conditions.


Tennis Vagabond Says:

What a win for Fed. Skeeze, that last point??

Glad to see Novak and Rafa still on. Wouldn’t be upset if a legit player like Raonic, or comer like Medvedev makes it to the finals, but otherwise, its thrilling to see the Big 3 showing what legends they are. It was also great to see Novak win the weird tournament, after Rafa’s huge win at USO. THese guys are still adding twists and turns to their rivalry, its unbelievable.

Fed played a C game against a legit player having the match of his life. He gutted out a victory. You love to see that as a fan. Even if Fed doesn’t win another grand slam, for his fans, there are still plenty of great moments.

Lots of excitement left in this draw.
Fed’s speed, endurance and guts passed the test. I think the skills let-down will pass.


Madmax Says:

Wog Boy Says:
Dave , I watched match too, you are right, when was the last time 38 years old made 82 UE and he played #47 in the world.

Sure thing Wog boy. You never change. Such subtle innuendos and obvious digs. Says a lot.

Skeezer, you said it buddy. Wog Boy is ready for Fed’s retirement, he will be here, there and everywhere trolling since 2014. Oh, nothing’s changed then.

Wogboy,

Nice cool breeze for a senior citizen. You should know. Let’s face it, you need that cool breeze whenever Fed’s playing because you can’t stand the heat.

Poor Wogboy. Such a complex about Federer. And don’t begin to even think you are novak’s fan, you just get on the gravy train when it suits you.


Madmax Says:

Tennis Vagabond Says:
What a win for Fed. Skeeze, that last point??

Yes TV! Amazing. Grit and more of it!

Fed is just insane at this point.


chrisford1 Says:

1st Coronavirus case confirmed in Melbourne. A traveler from Wuhan China.
Impact on AO is unknown. China is banning events with large crowds. Chinese New Year celebrators in Wuhan, and other cities, now, inc. Beijing, told to stay home.


Dave Says:

It’s not even going to be hot on Sunday. I’m actually sure that Nole would rather play during the day to be able to hit through the defense of Diego easier. And I’m sure Federer would actually prefer a day time match to be able to do the same thing. Sorry Wog Boy. I can’t agree with you on this one.


Wog Boy Says:

We can agree to disagree Dave. I probably know weather in Melbourne better than you, let’s wait for the Sunday and see, besides, Argentinian terrier prefers sun and humidity.
I just returned from Melbourne, I had good seat in the shade and it was hot, second round match Nole was struggling big time against Ito in the second set, whatever is the official temperature you add 10 digress (celsius) on the court, plus wind picked up in the second set, Nole just doesn’t deal with a windy conditions, third set wind was on and off so Nole finished Ito.
Sunday humidity 50-60% and very windy, 20km/h.
We have a saying here, you can experience 4 seasons in one day in Melbourne, to finish, it’s well known that Nole prefers night matches.


Wog Boy Says:

CF1, 4 cases confirmed in Australia, we all know there is more cases than 4, only Sydney has roughly half a million Chinese people leaving permanently here, what about cousins coming and some “forgetting” to go back.
I was away for a week, went to city today, every second Asian wears mask and city is full of Chinese tourists, they are number 1 tourist here.
You stop on the lights, look at the car next to you and driver wears gloves and mask, it is scary.


chrisford1 Says:

Nick and Karen -the fans got their money’s worth! Classic battle.

Now Nick and Rafa. I think both guys will be very motivated to beat the other, for reasons well past just advancing.

I’m cheering for Nick. Pretty much because I enjoy seeing Rafa frustrated every year at the Australian Open the way he frustrates everyone at the French Open.


skeezer Says:

TV,
Yes it ended on a FH winner, of which he had a hard time hitting all day. Epic!
Rafa playing really good this tourney. Kyrgios is there. If he decides to play, should be a cracker.


Wog Boy Says:

Rafa in 3, easy.


Alison Hodge Says:

Just read Brazilian tennis player Jaou Sousa has received a life time ban from tennis for match fixing ….


Dave Says:

Wog Boy,

You are right that he doesn’t like to play in the sun or Windy conditions. The high is supposed to be 24 from what I read. The wind won’t even be close to the French Open last year or the US Open in 2012 that he played in. They both hit the ball very flat so I don’t see either being able to handle wind much better than the other. Colder night conditions could turn the courts like a clay court match,which Diego loves and would force Nole to grind it out for a long time. So I see your points. They are valid. But the night conditions are very slow as well as the balls making the conditions even slower.


skeezer Says:

These conditions, so called preferred scheduling, lights, no lights, indoors/out whatever are just fodder talk. In the end, you have to be the player who can play through and win in all conditions and opponents to win consistently. Guys like Fed have proved that.


Dave Says:

Not really Skeezer. Conditions play a huge part in all 3 of their careers at times and have definitely changed the outcomes of matches. Federer ended up going from actually having a chance against Nadal with his ultra aggressive style at the French last year to no chance of even making it a match because of the super windy conditions favoring Nadal who hits with way more spin. I can name many other examples to make a case for all three at times. So it definitely matters. You still have to learn to win that’s true. But all these things play a part in matches for sure.


skeezer Says:

IMO these things are just excuses, Nobody cares there was no light left in the GMOAT @ Wimby. What ultimately mattered is Nadal won. He played better (or saw better lol) than Fed in the same conditions.
To play better at night than during the day? In windy conditions or not? Maybe, maybe not. They should learn to play good in both if they want to accumulate 20 Slams.
Remember Djoker couldn’t play in heat, he melted. But he overcame it so now he plays fine hot or cold. For an competitive athlete, these things are just excuses to not win a tennis match.

“In the end, you have to be the player who can play through and win in all conditions and opponents to win consistently.”


Andy Mira Says:

WB 9:07am…Chinese r the 3rd largest ethnic in my country…and some of them already left for mainland China to celebrate Chinese New Year with their family there..and i bet some of them already left Australia too to do the same…

And what scariest?All of them will come back in a weeks time after Chap Goh Meh…i’m not sure that those who come back will not carry anything after blending together in a train,bus,airport or even in public after a week there…if 1 chinese women can passed the Paris health security,who says they can’t pass our’s?


Andy Mira Says:

Hey Al…Sorry..it’s Joao Souza(Brazilian) and not Joao Sousa(Portugal)..


Daniel Says:

Raonic beats Cilic on straights and no tiebreaks. Reaches QF without dropping a set.

Djoko up a set, playing precise tennis. His serving is great this tourney, a lot of aces. Will be hard to beat this tourney.


Daniel Says:

Djoko zoning now, doesn’t miss anything and doing whateber he wants on court. Jmpecable performance.
3-0 and serve 2nd set.
3 straights breaks since 4-3 1st set.


Alison Hodge Says:

Andi Mira lol thanks but thats what i said Brazilian hun ….


Andy Mira Says:

Ok Al!…😃👍


Daniel Says:

Federer is through, played a 4 setter (2 hours 11min) just 5 min more than Djoko’s 3 with Schwartz. Sandrgeen next in QF.

Unless Raonic has some to say and finally beats Djoko, Fed x Djoko semis os almost sure happeing.
But Fed will have to find the WTF gear and serve better, because Djoko seems loke he found his mark and will only get better till title.


Ronn Says:

Roger served only 5 aces the whole match and won like 67% of his 1st serves. He’ll have to play A LOT better than that if he meets Djoko in the semis to have a chance to beat him.


Alison Hodge Says:

Off topic for a minute sorry folks, just wanted to say Kobe Bryant has been killed in a helecopter crash, a sad day for sport R.I.P :-(


chrisford1 Says:

Alison with 1 “L” – I saw the initial news feed and prayed it wasn’t true. Besides Kobe, his younger daughter was with him an died as well as 7 other people on the helo.
At the Australian Open website, tributes pouring in from tennis players.
The day before Kobe died, an article was put up on the AO site from an interview with Novak Djokovic about how important he thought Kobe was as a friend and mentor when he was in a very down place in 2017 with injury and serious doubts, and said Bryant was a big part in his return to the top.. They had known each other about 10 years, bonded on being very bright and trying new things to get better, and parenting later, and speaking fluent Italian.
Kobe Bryant was an exceptional human being with talents past being a super athlete. He was was showing enormous success in entrepreneurship and finance after he retired. He started “Body Armor” drinks with an investment of 6 million and the product took off to the point that Coca Cola bought it from him for 200 million.
He started a capital investment firm and was managing 2 billion dollars as principal of the firm.
Today, Djokovic joined the tributes, he focused on appreciation of Kobe and thoughts to his wife, other daughter and relatives.
Trump and Obama gave tributes and consolations as well, hundreds of players and staff of the NBA.


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