Australia: Stefanos Tsitsipas in the semi-finals

Stefanos Tsitsipas was finally the first to find the solution to the Jiri Lehica puzzle on Tuesday, 24 hours after eliminating Czech Kipker Felix Auger-Aliassime.

In fact, the Greeks left no chance for the 71st in the world. Imperial as it has been since the start of the Australian Open – with the exception of two sets against Italian Yannick Sinner – the third favorite won 6-3, 7-6(2), 6-4.

The victory gave the 24-year-old his ticket to the semi-finals and a showdown with 18th seed Karen Khachanov of Russia, Thursday-Friday evening EST.

“The answer is yes”

But Tsitsipas yearns for more than that. The Greek believes that this year can finally be the right year. The one in which he won his first major title.

However, he came very close two years ago at Roland Garros, during this final he dominated Novak Djokovic after two sets.

The Serb didn’t remember it at Monday’s press conference – it was stated that Tsitsipas had never reached a Grand Slam final, before being corrected by journalists … – but “Djoko” managed to turn the tide to win in five sets.

“I love my tennis at the moment,” said the third seed, shortly after his victory over young Lehecka. I haven’t felt this good in a long time.

“Thus, [si on me demande si je vise un Grand Chelem cette année]The answer is yes.”

Not far from disqualification

If Greece’s match against Lehecka on Tuesday looked good at the big Rod Laver Arena, his attitude towards the end of the match, let’s say, was even more questionable.

See also  English rejoicing after the lionesses were crowned at the Euro against Germany

At 4-3 in the third set, on the Czech’s serve, Tsitsipas got angry after committing an unforced error. In a gesture of frustration, he hit the ball against the wall behind him.

The problem was that he almost hit a ball catcher who was nearby at the same time. If the ball has to hit the young host, the third world player is immediately disqualified from the tournament.

This also happened to Djokovic at the US Open, three years ago, but this time it was the line judge who was affected. No doubt Djoko remembers it best from the final against Tsitsipas.

“I only saw the catcher when the ball came back close to me, and the Greek apologized. Of course I wasn’t aiming for that. I’m a professional tennis player.”

“In my eyes, he was way out of my way. I would have really missed my shot to get to him. But of course, I shouldn’t have hit that ball against the wall. I’m not happy with the way I reacted.”

Victoria Azarenka joined Elena Rybakina in the semi-finals

Belarusian Victoria Azarenka, ranked 24th in the world and twice winner in 2012 and 2013, qualified for the Australian Open semi-finals by defeating American Jessica Pegula (third) 6-4, 6-1 on Tuesday in Melbourne.

“I knew from the start that it was going to be tough and that she would seize every opportunity she had. I executed my game plan perfectly and I am happy to be in the semi-finals,” commented the 33-year-old who donned the Paris Saint-Germain football shirt before answering questions on the field. .

See also  A Quebecer in the arms of the Columbus crew

On Thursday, she will face Kazakhstan’s Elena Rybakina (25), who knocked out Latvian Jelena Ostapenko (17), for a place in the final.

Since the quarter-finals in 2016, she hasn’t gone beyond the eighth stage in Melbourne, which she reached last year. She was absent in 2017, 2018 and 2020 and was eliminated in the first round in 2019 and 2021.

“Last year my tennis wasn’t bad, but I wasn’t there mentally. I was anxious and hesitant. So I worked a lot on my brain,” she explains.

Under the watchful eye of tennis legend Rod Laver, Azarenka attempted to instantly choke out a match against an opponent who hadn’t dropped a set in the previous four rounds.

“I was a little nervous because you want to show your best tennis when you play against the best,” she commented, referring to The Rocket, the man who has hit the Grand Slam twice.

The Belarusian player broke Pegula’s first game to advance 3-0 and got six double break points to advance 4-0, but the American kept serving.

Then she got two set points on Pegula’s serve with a score of 5-3, but the latter saved the confrontation and broke her move after saving two more points.

But in the fifth time, on Pegula’s serve, Azarenka scored the first set after 64 minutes.

Then things really accelerated: Pegula didn’t win a single match on her serve, but she did manage to break serve, losing on her first match point after the match 1:37.

See also  Alsace Sports and DNA Awards. Gymnast Benjamin Osberger was elected Alsatian Athlete of the Month for September

In the first round, Azarenka knocked out the only winner of the tournament in the draw, American Sofia Kenin (2020).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.