MELBOURNE, January 20, 2019
Stefanos Tsitsipas has become the youngest man to advance to the quarterfinals of the Australian Open since 19-year-old Nick Kyrgios four years ago. The 20-year-old from Greece upset 37-year-old Roger Federer, the oldest competitor left in the men’s draw 6-7(11), 7-6(3), 7-5, 7-6(5) in Sunday’s night session on Rod Laver Arena.
Tsitsipas fired 20 aces, winning 78 per cent of his first service points to prevail after three hours and 45 minutes.
“I’m the happiest man on earth right now,” Tsitsipas told John McEnroe during his on-court interview.
“It’s very important to have this aggressive mindset and not to think too much about what’s going to happen. Stay in the moment, play percentage tennis, have first serves in and press from the very beginning.
“I managed to do that. I didn’t lose my patience in some of the rallies that we played, so that was the key to saving those break points. And overall, I showed a great fighting spirit and determination.
“I do believe that coming to the net, being aggressive and taking the ball early, we have to keep it going. Most players in this era are baseliners, and I really like this aggressive game – coming to the net, serve-volleying sometimes. It keeps the game alive.”
“Roger is a legend of our sport, so much respect for him. He showed such good tennis over the years. I’ve been analysing him since the age of six, and it was a dream come true for me just being on Rod Laver Arena facing him. Winning at the end, I cannot describe it.”
Federer entered the match on a 17-match winning streak at Melbourne Park.
“I have massive regrets tonight… I felt like I had to win the second set,” said Federer. “I don’t care how I do it, but I had to do it. It cost me the game tonight.”
Bautista Agut fights past Cilic
Tsitsipas will next take on Roberto Bautista Agut, who has advanced to the stage of the final eight at a Grand Slam for the first time. The 30-year-old Spaniard fought past No. 6 seeded Croat Marin Cilic 6-7(6), 6-3, 6-2, 4-6,6-4. Bautista Agut withstood 17 aces, breaking Cilic’s serve five times to prevail in just under four hours of play on Margaret Court Arena.
Day/Night Attendance: 70,259
This is a Middle Saturday Day/Night session record – previous record AO 2018 (63,737)