Canadian star Milos Raonic celebrates
australian open

Raonic survives four-hour marathon with Wawrinka as Osaka powers into third round

Milos Raonic had to dig deep in a four-set victory over 2014 champion Stan Wawrinka at Melbourne Park.

MILOS RAONIC OUTLASTED Stan Wawrinka in a gruelling four-set shoot-out to book his spot in the third round of the Australian Open.

Raonic survived 6-7 (4-7) 7-6 (8-6) 7-6 (13-11) 7-6 (7-5) against 2014 champion Wawrinka after more than four hours in Melbourne on Thursday, marking the longest match the Canadian star has won in his career.

Four tie-breaks were needed as 16th seed Raonic – a quarter-finalist or better in three of the past four years at Melbourne Park – prevailed in humid conditions on Rod Laver Arena.

Raonic fired down 39 aces compared to Swiss Wawrinka’s 28, while he topped the winners column 84-66 en route to the next round.

Next up for Raonic is Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert.

Naomi Osaka showed her class and power against Tamara Zidansek as she reached the Australian Open third round.

US Open champion and fourth seed Osaka was too good in her 6-2 6-4 victory over Zidansek in humid conditions at Melbourne Park on Thursday.

Osaka – aiming to become the first woman to win successive grand slams since Serena Williams claimed the 2014 US Open followed by the Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon in 2015 – will face Hsieh Su-wei in the next round.

Osaka, who has never reached the quarter-finals in Melbourne, earned three break-point opportunities in the opening game and converted the third with a cheeky drop-shot winner, much to the delight of the pro-Osaka crowd.

A couple of loose errors saw Osaka broken back, but the crowd favourite reclaimed the break immediately after sensationally guessing the direction of Zidansek’s smash before taking the second set 6-4.

- Omni

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