MURRAY MOUNTS EPIC COMEBACK, AUSSIE AJLA OUT IN SYDNEY

Heavy rain in Sydney led to a reduced schedule on Wednesday night but Ken Rosewall Arena still played host to two high-quality contests.

Five-time Australian Open finalist Andy Murray recovered from a set down against No. 2 seed Nikoloz Basilashvili in the early hours of Thursday morning to progress to the quarterfinals of the Sydney Tennis Classic.

Murray squandered chances to serve out both the first and second sets but still would not be denied, eventually coming away with a 6-7(4), 7-6(3), 6-3 victory in three hours and 13 minutes.

The easy power of Basilashvili on both forehand and backhand wings was a constant headache for the Scotsman whose knack of making that extra ball – something that served him so well over the course of his illustrious career – kept him in the match.

Murray now faces the unenviable task of backing up from one of the most physical matches of the summer so far against former World No. 7 David Goffin.

The Belgian dispatched Denis Kudla 6-2, 6-3 in an hour and 21 minutes.

Earlier on Ken Rosewall Arena, Ajla Tomljanovic fell to No. 5 seed Paula Badosa 6-3, 6-4 in the second round of the Sydney Tennis Classic.

In a match riddled with service breaks and momentum swings, both players had success on return, but it was Badosa who found her range at the business end of both sets.

Tomljanovic and Badosa provided the Ken Rosewall Arena crowd with plenty of highlights on the back of powerful exchanges from beyond the baseline.

The match looked to be slipping away in the second when Badosa served for a 4-1 advantage but from 0-40 down Tomljanovic rallied.

The Australian reeled off three straight games for a 4-3 lead but on the point that saw her claim the seventh game, Tomljanovic’s racquet broke a string.

From there, Tomljanovic struggled to find the timing and accuracy that had helped her back into the match and Badosa won running away without dropping another game.

World No. 45 Tomljanovic now faces a nervous wait before tomorrow night’s Australian Open draw where she could be drawn to face anyone, including seeded players.

Badosa will also have to sit tight before she learns of her next opponent with the suspended match between Belinda Bencic and Oceane Dodin to decide her quarterfinal foe.

Other Results

Sydney Tennis Classic

Men’s Singles, Round 2

[5] Lorenzo Sonego (ITA) d [Q] Sebastian Baez (ARG) 6-2, 6-3

Brandon Nakashima (USA) d Fabio Fognini (ITA) 7-6(7), 7-6(6)

[3] Daniel Evans (GBR) d Pedro Martinez (ESP) 6-2, 6-3

[2] Aslan Karatsev (RUS) d Miomir Kecmanovich (SRB) 7-5, 6-4

[4] Reilly Opelka (USA) d Jordan Thompson (AUS) 6-3, 6-2

[8] David Goffin (BEL) d Denis Kudla (USA) 6-2, 6-3

Women’s Singles, Round 2

[4] Anett Kontaveit (EST) d [Q] Elena Gabriela Ruse (ROU) 6-3, 6-1

[7] Ons Jabeur (TUN) d Petra Kvitova (CZE) 6-4, 6-4

Daria Kasatkina (RUS) d Elise Mertens (BEL) 6-3, 6-4

[2] Garbine Muguruza (ESP) d Ekaterina Alexandrova (RUS) 6-1, 7-6(4)

[3] Barbora Krejcikova (CZE) d Jaqueline Cristian (ROU) 6-1, 7-5