Osaka back to No. 2; Medvedev No. 3; Karatsev jumps 72 spots
(AP Photo/Hamish Blair)Naomi Osaka's Australian Open championship moved her up one spot to No. 2 in the WTA rankings Monday, while men's finalist Daniil Medvedev rose to a career-best No. Aslan Karatsev's historic run from qualifying to the final four before losing to nine-time Australian Open champion Djokovic allowed him to vault 72 places from 114th to 42nd. Barty took nearly a full year off, for example, but still has her points from winning the 2019 French Open and reaching the semifinals at the 2020 Australian Open. Aryna Sabalenka now leads the WTA doubles rankings after pairing with Elise Mertens to win the Australian Open women's doubles title.
The Latest: Djokovic says he did tear muscle in Australia
All rights reservedMELBOURNE – The Latest on Day 14 of the Australian Open tennis tournament (all times local):12:25 a.m.Novak Djokovic says he did tear an abdominal muscle in his third-round match at the Australian Open. ___9:40 p.m.Novak Djokovic has beaten Daniil Medvedev 7-5, 6-2, 6-2 to win his ninth Australian Open championship and 18th Grand Slam title. Djokovic is now one set away from his ninth championship at Melbourne Park and 18th Grand Slam title overall. Djokovic is seeking a ninth Australian Open trophy and 18th Grand Slam title overall. AdNovak Djokovic is bidding for a ninth Australian Open singles title in the final later Sunday against fourth-seeded Daniil Medvedev.
Djokovic keeps perfect record in Australian Open semifinals
Serbia's Novak Djokovic celebrates after defeating Russia's Aslan Karatsev in their semifinal match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021..(AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)MELBOURNE – Novak Djokovic had a perfect record in Australian Open semifinals, and he was playing almost flawless tennis to protect it. He's now 9-0 in semifinals at the season-opening major, and one win from a ninth Australian title. Ad“The more I win, the better I feel coming back," the top-ranked Djokovic said. Given his past success in Melbourne, Djokovic should feel confident going into another championship match. After the win, Djokovic said Karatsev deserved plenty of praise for his amazing major breakthrough.
Serena stopped: Osaka beats Williams in Australian Open SF
United States' Serena Williams reacts during a press conference following her semifinal loss to Japan's Naomi Osaka at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Feb. 18, 2021. On Saturday, at 7:30 p.m. local time (3:30 a.m. EST), Osaka will meet first-time Grand Slam finalist Jennifer Brady of the United States for the championship. “My heart is racing.”She lost to Osaka in a three-set thriller in the U.S. Open semifinals last September. That stage hasn't been a problem for top-ranked Novak Djokovic, who has won 14 of his last semifinals at Grand Slam events. Djokovic is seeking a ninth Australian Open title and 18th Grand Slam trophy overall.
The Latest: Krejcikova aims for doubles double in Australia
Barbora Krejcikova of the Czech Republic makes a forehand return to Russia's Ekaterina Alexandrova during their second round match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Thursday, Feb. 11, 2021. All rights reservedMELBOURNE – The Latest on the Australian Open (all times local):7 p.m.Barbora Krejcikova has set up a shot at an Australian Open doubles double over the next couple of days. AdNaomi Osaka has stopped Serena Williams’ latest bid for a record-tying 24th Grand Slam singles title in the Australian Open semifinals. 1 Novak Djokovic vs. Aslan Karatsev, a qualifier from Russia who is ranked 114th and playing in his first Grand Slam tournament. Djokovic is seeking a ninth Australian Open title and 18th Grand Slam trophy overall.
223-2: Nadal blows 2-set lead against Tsitsipas in Australia
Spain's Rafael Nadal reacts after winning a point against Greece's Stefanos Tsitsipas during their quarterfinal match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)MELBOURNE – Rafael Nadal entered his Australian Open quarterfinal with a 223-1 record when grabbing the first two sets of a Grand Slam match. Neither Tsitsipas nor Medvedev has won a Grand Slam tournament. 1-ranked Novak Djokovic will face 114th-ranked qualifier Aslan Karatsev, who is making his Grand Slam debut. It looked like it could be a repeat of their 2019 semifinal in Australia, when Nadal overwhelmed Tsitsipas and allowed him to win just six games.
The Latest: Nadal loses to Tsitsipas in 5 at Australian Open
(AP Photo/Hamish Blair)MELBOURNE – The Latest on Day 10 of the Australian Open (all times local):11:55 p.m.Rafael Nadal’s bid for a men’s-record 21st Grand Slam title has ended with a five-set loss to Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Australian Open quarterfinals. He has been pushed to a fifth set by Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Australian Open quarterfinals. ___10 p.m.Rafael Nadal's Grand Slam set streak has ended at 35 after he dropped one against Stefanos Tsitsipas in the Australian Open quarterfinals. The pair were teammates when Russia won the ATP Cup team event on the eve of the Australian Open. Kenin lost to Kaia Kanepi in straight sets in the second round of her title defense at the Australian Open last week.
'Not normal': Djokovic raises quarantine-injury connection
Italy's Matteo Berrettini, left, receives medical treatment during a break while playing Russia's Karen Khachanov during their third round match at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Saturday, Feb. 13, 2021. 1-ranked Djokovic, who sees what is happening all around Melbourne Park and draws a direct connection to the 14-day quarantines imposed because of the coronavirus pandemic when players arrived in Australia in January. Ad“It's too many injuries, honestly,” Djokovic said, then sighed heavily, during an on-court interview after his four-set quarterfinal victory against Alexander Zverev. “I'm just hoping this is all temporary, so we can kind of go back to what we are kind of used to, without interruptions of practice,” Djokovic continued. It's really — it's taken its toll, unfortunately, on all of us.”Zverev's midsection, like Djokovic's, was taped up for their match.
Smashing success: Djokovic beats Zverev, into Australian SF
Serbia's Novak Djokovic smashes his racket during his quarterfinal match against Germany's Alexander Zverev at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)MELBOURNE – Novak Djokovic smashed a racket, sending a piece of the frame flying. He dropped the opening set against Alexander Zverev, one of the young guys trying to shove aside Djokovic and the rest of the Big Three. And this is Djokovic at the Australian Open, where no man ever has been better. So, naturally, Djokovic pulled himself together and pulled out the victory, reaching his ninth semifinal at Melbourne Park by eliminating No.
Serena tops Halep at Australian Open, sets up Osaka showdown
United States' Serena Williams reacts after winning a point against Romania's Simona Halep during their quarterfinal match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021. (AP Photo/Hamish Blair)MELBOURNE – Serena Williams was not pleased with the way her play suddenly was slipping in the Australian Open quarterfinals. That was her most recent Grand Slam title. 24 on Saturday, she could end up needing to have beaten each of the top three players in the rankings: Halep, Osaka and, perhaps in the final, No. At 35, Hsieh used her tricky, two-handed shots off both sides to become the oldest woman in the professional era to make her Grand Slam quarterfinal debut.
Injured Djokovic advances to quarters at Australian Open
Serbia's Novak Djokovic hits a backhand return to Canada's Milos Raonic during their fourth round match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021. For anyone curious about the severity of his injury, he put it into context after qualifying for the Australian Open quarterfinals for the 12th time. The eight-time Australian Open champion planned to spend most of the next two days recovering ahead of his quarterfinal against sixth-seeded Alexander Zverev. “If you’re here, it’s for a reason - there’s no doubt about it,” Dimitrov said after his 6-4, 6-4, 6-0 win. AdAnd not since Patrick McEnroe — John’s brother — in 1991 has a man ranked as low as 114th made it to the Australian Open quarterfinals.
Hey, Australian Open TV viewers: Those claps aren't real
Marketa Vondrousova of the Czech Republic smashes the ball to Taiwan's Hsieh Su-Wei in front of rows of empty seats during their fourth round match at the Australian Open tennis championships in Melbourne, Australia, Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021. The Australian Open continues but without crowds after the Victoria state government imposed a five-day lockdown in response to a COVID-19 outbreak at a quarantine hotel. (AP Photo/Andy Brownbill)MELBOURNE – Hey, Australian Open TV viewers: The crowd's loud clapping and mid-match chatter you hear on the telecasts are not real. It just happened here.”Aslan Karatsev is a 27-year-old Russian who is ranked 114th and needed to go through three rounds of qualifying just to get into the main draw at the Australian Open. And not since Patrick McEnroe — John's brother — in 1991 has a man ranked as low as 114th made it to the Australian Open quarterfinals.
Down but not out, Serena Williams into Australian Open QFs
United States' Serena Williams falls during her fourth round match against Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Hamish Blair)MELBOURNE – Serena Williams tumbled to the ground, her heavily taped right ankle turning, her body contorting, her racket flying. Grabbing the last two games, Williams pulled out 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 victory over No. Oh, my goodness.”Sabalenka — a 22-year-old from Belarus playing in only her second fourth-round Slam match — was visibly and audibly frustrated. Dominic Thiem — the Australian Open runner-up and U.S. Open champion in 2020 — looked physically compromised in a 6-4, 6-4, 6-0 loss to three-time major semifinalist Grigor Dimitrov.
The Latest: Djokovic beats Raonic, reaches QFs in Australia
AdHe said: “If it’s any other tournament than a Grand Slam, then I’d withdraw from that event, that’s for sure. Defending champion Novak Djokovic has started his fourth-round match against Milos Raonic at the Australian Open. He'll play either U.S. Open champion Dominic Thiem or Grigor Dimitrov next and he says he doesn't have a preference. Their match is to be followed by eight-time Australian Open champion Djokovic against 2016 Wimbledon finalist Milos Raonic — assuming Djokovic decides he can play. Other men in action include reigning U.S. Open champion Dominic Thiem and the man he beat in that final, Alexander Zverev.