Carrying home aspirations, Alex de Minaur believes his Australian Open campaign is going just as planned, with the top-ranked local claiming he has enough left in the tank. With a win over Italian qualifier Flavio Cobolli on Friday night, the world No.10 can match his previous best Open finish of reaching the fourth round in the last two years. Follow satiknews for latest updates.
Thanasi Kokkinakis exited the singles draw on Thursday night, leaving de Minaur as the final Australian man remaining. Grigor Dimitrov, Bulgaria’s 13th seed, defeated Kokkinakis 6-3, 6-2, 4-6, 6-4.
De Minaur’s match is the final on John Cain Arena, while 10-time Open champion Novak Djokovic opens the night on Rod Laver Arena against Argentina’s Tomas Etcheverry.
Storm Hunter, Australia’s world No.1 doubles player, will face former French Open champion Barbora Krejcikova of the Czech Republic in the third round after Djokovic.
De Minaur only had to play two full sets in his first round match against Milos Raonic before the Canadian veteran retired injured, and he then dropped only six games in a straight sets victory over Matteo Arnaldi, spending less than four hours on court in all.
The 24-year-old said he’d learnt that conserving energy was crucial for going deep in a grand slam. De Minaur believes he’s full of confidence after defeating the world’s top two players, Djokovic and Carlos Alcaraz, this summer. A victory over world No. 100 Cobolli will face either world number five Andrey Rublev or the 29th seed Sebastian Korda in the fourth round. De Minaur believes he can now win a match even when he isn’t at his best.
In the third set, the brave Kokkinakis held his own against Dimitrov. Up 5-4, he had two break points on Dimitrov’s serve before winning the set when his opponent missed a backhand.
The 27-year-old played toe-to-toe in the fourth set until he lost his serve at 4-5, allowing the veteran to serve out the match to love.