Three Aussies charged into the last 16 at Wimbledon ahead of Nick Kyrgios’ blockbuster match against Stefanos Tsitsipas.
We might not have a title contender like Ash Barty but Australia will have at least three reasons to watch the second week at Wimbledon after a green and gold-flavoured day six in London.
Alex de Minaur, Jason Kubler and Ajla Tomljanovic all progressed to the round of 16 ahead of Nick Kyrgios’ blockbuster match against Stefanos Tsitsipas.
Stunning upset opens door for Tomljanovic
Tomljanovic has a great opportunity to match last year’s quarterfinal run after her upset of 2021 French Open champion Barbora Krejcikova was followed by world number one Iga Swiatek’s shock defeat against Alize Cornet.
Tomljanovic – who sealed a 2-6 6-4 6-3 win over Czech 13th seed Krejcikova – has surprised her father, who only booked her into tournament accommodation until after the second round.
Despite making the quarters last year, Ratko Tomljanovic had only reserved their nearby house until
Friday. “I was like, you thought I’d lose second round,” said Tomljanovic. “At least book it till like Sunday. So
it’s a good problem to have. I’m not really satisfied being in the third round and then moving houses.”
The 29-year-old Australian said finding a new place was a headache. “The problem was it’s so hard to find
something. London is packed, and I didn’t want to stay an hour away. He didn’t take it well. I gave him a lot of grief yesterday.”
Tomljanovic managed to find a hotel near the All England Club on Friday.
However, there was more bad news from Ratko on Saturday. “Today when I finished, he’s like, ‘Oh, I have to book again’. I was, like, ‘you’re kidding me’.
“He wasn’t kidding but he managed to book the same hotel, so I have a room probably until Tuesday. But I
don’t care. I said, even if someone is joining me in my room, I’m not leaving this hotel.”
She says her father will keep booking her flights and hotels as he has done throughout her career even if his
explanation for the hotel blunder left her bamboozled. “He’s like, ‘Ajla, hungry rats swim the fastest’, whatever
that means,” she added. “I’m like, ‘I’m not a rat and I’m not hungry. I just want my house from the beginning
till the end, or maybe you should just believe in me a little more’.”
Next up for the world number 44 is a last-16 clash against French veteran Cornet, who ended Swiatek’s run of 37 consecutive match wins with a 6-4 6-2 demolition.
“It was stunning to see what happened to her today,” an ESPN commentator said.
Amanda Anisimova was the other big winner in the female draw early on day six, knocking out compatriot Coco Gauff 6-7 6-2 6-1. Former champion Simona Halep is also looming after a 6-4 6-1 win against Magdalena Frech.
De Minaur-Kyrgios quarterfinal well and truly alive
De Minaur beat British wild card Liam Broady 6-3 6-4 7-5 to go further at this tournament than he ever has before.
He’s a huge chance to make the final eight with a winnable last 16 clash against world number 43 Cristian Garin.
If De Minaur can see off the Chilean he will await the winner of a match between American Brandon Nakashima and the winner of the Kyrgios-Tsitsipas encounter.
Kubler’s fairytale run continued with a five-set win against American Jack Sock.
Kubler survived the longest match of the tournament to date to win 6-2 4-6 5-7 7-6 6-3.
He will be up against it in his next match, facing American 11th seed Taylor Fritz, who is yet to drop a set in the tournament.
– with AFP