Only twice before has Rafael Nadal lost from two sets up before today.
In 2005 against Federer at the Miami Open and in 2015 against Fabio Fognini at the US Open, now Stefanos Tsitsipas has added his name to a very small list with his quarter final win at the Australian Open.
Down two sets to love I thought, curtains. Rafa was on-top of every ball, he was simply relentless and Stefanos was missing a bit of zip in his game. I was worried that missing his fourth round match following Berrettini’s withdrawal halted his momentum as it has done before.
It was similar to when in 2020 he made it through to round three without playing in the second round following Kohlschreiber’s withdrawal and broke momentum before he had to face Raonic in round three.
This time the performance level from Stefanos grew as it did in 2019 when he beat Federer in four in round four. Not only did the level grow but the clutch on big points was exceptional. He went from a guy who was being pulled about to a guy in total control.
He didn’t play badly at all in the first two sets but took his game to a new level and it halted the rampage of Rafa. The power behind his forehand and his accuracy on serve got him into good positions and began to comfortable hold onto service games.
I am soo pleased for Stefanos, I saw him run riot in Melbourne a couple of years back and watched his win over Nadal in Madrid too which was an epic!
Next up for him is Daniil Medvedev for a spot in a first Australian Open final with Daniil on a 10 match winning streak over top 10 players and is unbeaten in 19 matches.