Rafael Nadal Advances to Australian Open 4th Round
Rafael Nadal continued his march towards history on Saturday, breaking the hearts of many home fans in the process as he defeated Aussie teenager Bernard Tomic in a third-round match at the Australian Open.
Playing in front of hostile crowd at the Rod Laver Arena, Nadal showed Tomic how the big boys play in pressure-packed matches. The world no.1 easily won the first set, 6-2, but surrendered the first four games of the second set to Tomic, a wildcard entry considered a possible heir to fast-fading Australian star Lleyton Hewitt. Showing the skill and experience that have made him the world’s top-ranked player, Nadal snapped out of his mini slump to win seven of the next eight games and take the second set, 7-5. Tomic slowly drifted away in the third set, which Nadal easily won, 6-3.
Nadal will face 15th seed Marin Cilic in the fourth round. Cilic earned the right to face Nadal after outlasting marathon-man John Isner, 4-6, 6-2, 6-7, 7-6, 9-7.