Medvedev joins qualifier Yastremska in semis, Zverev stuns Alcaraz

football24 January 2024 15:06| © AFP

Two-time runner-up Daniil Medvedev battled past big-serving Hubert Hurkacz on Wednesday to set up an Australian Open semifinal against Alexander Zverev as Ukrainian qualifier Dayana Yastremska's dream run continued.

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Former US Open champion Medvedev came through a gruelling five-setter in sweaty conditions on Rod Laver Arena 7-6 (7/4), 2-6, 6-3, 5-7, 6-4 and will face eZverev in the last four.

The Russian world No 3 was twice pegged back by Polish ninth seed Hurkacz after going a set up but produced the crucial break in the decider to get over the line.

The 27-year-old, who lost to Novak Djokovic in the 2021 final and Rafael Nadal the following year, said he felt "destroyed" after the contest, which lasted nearly four hours.

"I honestly was feeling it physically at the end of the second set already and I said to stay tough," he said.

"Fourth set I've just no more concentration and I have to try my best to do whatever I can."


In the opening match on centre court, 93rd-ranked Yastremska cruised past unseeded Czech Linda Noskova to become just the second women's qualifier in the Open Era to get so far at the Australian Open.

She broke three times to win 6-3, 6-4 in 78 minutes and set up a clash against unseeded Russian Anna Kalinskaya or Chinese 12th seed Zheng Qinwen for a place in the final.

Yastremska is the first women's qualifier to reach the last four at the season-opening Grand Slam since Australia's Christine Matison in 1978.

"It's nice to make history, because at that time I wasn't even born," she said.

The 23-year-old wrote a message of support for Ukrainian fighters involved in the war against Russia on a TV camera lens after her win.

"I'm very proud of them," she said. "They really deserve huge respect. I always try to write something for Ukraine, about Ukraine.

"I think it's my mission here. If I do well, I can get – tough to express. I'm just trying to give the signal to Ukraine that I'm really proud of it."

Yastremska faced a tough battle to reach the main draw at Melbourne Park, being taken the distance in all three of her qualifying matches.

But she has since moved up a gear, eliminating Wimbledon champion and seventh seed Marketa Vondrousova in the first round and two-time champion Victoria Azarenka in the fourth round.


Germany's Zverev stunned second seed Carlos Alcaraz to reach the Australian Open semifinals as a sublime display of serving took him to a 6-1 6-3 6-7(2) 6-4 victory.

Zverev made a flying start on Rod Laver Arena, dropping just two points on serve as he raced through the opening set.

The sixth seed was rock solid to keep an unusually subdued Alcaraz at arm's length and broke serve twice in the second set as errors leaked off the Spaniard's racquet.

The pattern continued in the third set as the German maintained an incredibly high level but he faltered for the first time when serving for the match and Alcaraz played an astonishing tiebreak to prolong the contest.

A fired-up Alcaraz seemed to have the momentum in the fourth set but a tiring Zverev dug deep to stay with the Spaniard and broke serve at 4-4 before closing out his first ever win against a top five-ranked opponent in a Grand Slam.

He will face Russian Daniil Medvedev in Friday's semifinal.