Melbourne | Both Sandgren and Paul upset seeds
Hannah Peters/Getty Images
As the players got to grips with the second round of the men’s singles in Melbourne, two seeds found themselves at the wrong end of the result.
He played too good in the fourth, kind of beat me up a little bit, so going into the fifth set I didn’t feel like I had much momentum ... I think I got away with one there. Tennys Sandgren
Tennys Sandgren dispatched the eighth seeded Matteo Berrettini after a three hour 23-minute battle five set marathon as the American produced another strong performance at the Australian Open.
His 7-6(7) 6-4 4-6 2-6 7-5 loss makes the Italian the highest seed to fall so far at the Australian Open in is a disappointing result for Berrettini who in the previous two years, has lost in the opening round.
Last year he reached the fourth round at Wimbledon and the semi-finals of the US Open to reach the top ten and was on a positive roll in grand slam terms.
“It’s a top 10 at a slam so it’s right up there,” the affable 28-year-old American said of what is one of the best wins of his career.
“He played too good in the fourth, kind of beat me up a little bit, so going into the fifth set I didn’t feel like I had much momentum … I think I got away with one there.”
Sandgren has been getting away with a good few wins at Grand Slams since he beat ninth seed and former champion Stan Wawrinka in the second round in 2018 and embarked on a stunning run to the quarter-finals at Melbourne Park.
Putting his poor ranking down to his inability to manage his schedule sensibly, Sandgren seems to blossom at the majors.
“I like these tournaments a lot, it’s one of the few weeks where it feels like tennis actually means something,” he said.
“Sometimes it feels like you get lost when you are traveling 25-30 weeks of the year. I feel like my game comes together in weeks like this.”
He added remembering his past exploits at grand slams, “Confidence is a very fickle thing. It helps to know that you can do something but if you’re stick in the woods and you can’t really see the sun, it doesn’t matter what you’ve done, if you can’t get a good vibe going, your confidence is lost.”
Standing in his path to the fourth compatriot Sam Querrey who will test his confidence the pair having met at Wimbledon last year when Querrey came out on top in a four setter, three of them on tie-breaks.
Jonathan DiMaggio/Getty Images
Also out is Grigor Dimitrov, seeded 18, who having fallen behind two-sets to love, came back strongly to level the match and even lead 5-4, 30-0 in the deciding fifth set only for his game to fall apart
His opponent the 22-year-old American, Tommy Paul, took full advantage forcing the Bulgarian into several crucial errors and eventual 6-4 7-6(4) 3-6 6-7(3) 7-6(3) victory, the best of his career, after 4 hours, 19-minutes.
Commenting after the match, Paul told the crowd: “I’ve never been a part of something like that, honestly. A lot of fun playing in front of all you guys. Towards the end of the fifth, it was you guys who got me through it,”
Paul faces Marton Fucsovics next, the Hungarian having eased past promising 18-year-old Italian Jannik Sinner in straights.