AUSTRALIAN OPEN 2014
Wawrinka Sets Djokovic Re-Match
by ATP Staff|
A year after playing an instant classic at the Australian Open, Novak Djokovic and Stanislas Wawrinka will once again go toe-to-toe in Melbourne after both impressed to reach the quarter-finals on Sunday.
The three-time defending champion Djokovic turned in a performance representative of his stature in Australian Open lore, hammering 15th-seed Fabio Fognini 6-3, 6-0, 6-2 in 94 minutes. Djokovic advanced to his 19th consecutive Grand Slam quarter-final with the win, extending his winning streak at the Australian Open to 25 matches. The World No. 2 dominated nearly all baseline exchanges and turned in an impenetrable serving performance, claiming the first 13 points on his serve and not facing a break point.
“I’ve felt from the start of this tournament that I've been elevating my game as the tournament is going on,” said Djokovic. “Every match is better [with] the general feeling on the court, all the shots, using the court position really well, being aggressive and playing my style of the game. That's what I've done really well today overall from the first to the last point. I haven't allowed my opponent to come back to the match.
“Mentally I was there. I was tough. I was focused. I feel great about myself in this moment. There is this confidence that I carry on obviously from many wins that I had in last two months of the 2013 season and I started off this season in a good style. I’m trying to keep it up.”
Djokovic joins Roger Federer, Stefan Edberg and Ivan Lendl as the only men to reach at least seven consecutive quarter-finals at the Australian Open in the Open Era. Djokovic is chasing an Open Era record fourth successive Australian Open title and fifth overall, having won his first Grand Slam championship at Melbourne Park in 2008 (d. Tsonga). Fognini was looking to become the first Italian man to advance to the Australian Open quarter-finals since Cristiano Caratti in 1991.
Wawrinka won the final match of the day, defeating No. 17 seed Tommy Robredo 6-3, 7-6(3), 7-6(5). The eighth-seeded Wawrinka entered the match with just one victory in seven meetings with the Spaniard but won 55 of his 61 first serve points to move through to the last eight for the second time (2011).
Watch Wawrinka vs Robredo Highlights
The Swiss is aiming to reach his second consecutive major semi-final after upsetting defending champion Andy Murray at the US Open in September before falling to Djokovic. Wawrinka, this year's Aircel Chennai Open titlist, will need to overturn a 2-15 FedEx ATP Head2Head record against the Serb, who has reeled off 14 straight wins. Last year at Melbourne Park, Djokovic edged Wawrinka 12-10 in a decisive fifth set to win their round of 16 clash.
“I watched him a little bit today. He's really, really tough to beat,” said Wawrinka. “I had five sets against him last year here. Five sets in the US Open. But I didn't win. I didn't find the solution to beat him. So it's going to be really difficult.”
Most Consecutive Grand Slam Quarter-final Appearances (Open Era)
*denotes active streak