Tag: Milos Raonic

Australian Open: Novak Djokovic beats Milos Raonic in quarters

Four-time champion Novak Djokovic dismantled the big serving of Milos Raonic to reach the Australian Open semi-finals.

The world number one needed just one hour and 55 minutes to beat eighth seed Raonic 7-6 (7-5) 6-4 6-2.

Djokovic, 27, is through to his 25th Grand Slam semi-final as he chases an eighth major title.

He will next face defending champion Stan Wawrinka for the third year running in Melbourne.

“I take a lot of confidence,” sad Djokovic. “I try to carry that in every next match, next challenge. Obviously I’m going to play Stan, who is the defending champion here.

“We played five-set matches in 2013 and 2014 Australian Open. I’m going to be ready for a fight. But knowing that I have raised the level of performance tonight, and probably playing the best match of the tournament so far is affecting my confidence in a positive way.

“Hopefully I can carry that into next one.”

Raonic, 24, went into the match with 99 aces to his name and having dropped serve just twice in four matches.

Djokovic’s return proved too much to handle, however, and while lacking the Canadian’s service speed, the Serb moved into the last four having been broken just once in the tournament.

There were moments of frustration for Djokovic as four break points came and went in the first set, but a wild Raonic forehand at 3-2 down in the tie-break handed over the initiative.

Djokovic capitalised, before taking an even firmer grip on the contest with a brilliant cross-court backhand winner to finally break at the start of the second.

Raonic, who reached the semi-finals at Wimbledon last year, could not hurt the top seed and failed to muster a single break point as the match raced away from him.

Djokovic broke twice more as he cruised through the third set, sealing victory with a backhand volley to reach his fifth Australian semi-final.

“He just didn’t allow me to organise my game. Even when he was returning well, by the end of the match he was doing a good job of playing deep and never allowing me to go forward,” said Raonic.

“Obviously if you watch the footage, he was pretty much on the baseline the whole time and I was further back.”

Read more at BBC Sport

ATP Brisbane: Federer battles to claim 1,000th career victory

Roger Federer claimed his 1,000th career victory and collected his 83rd title with a 6-4 6-7(2) 6-4 win over Milos Raonic in the ATP Brisbane Final.

The 17-time major winner broke Raonic’s serve in the third game and again in the opening game of the second set but just when Federer appeared set for a comfortable victory, the 24-year-old Canadian broke back in the fourth game to swing the momentum.

The second set then stayed on serve until the tie-break, where Raonic dropped the first two points before winning the last seven to level the match.

After overcoming his early nerves, third-seeded Raonic was playing a cool, composed game until he served his first double-fault of the third set, giving Federer championship point. Raonic netted a forehand on the next point, allowing Federer to join Jimmy Connors (1,253) and Ivan Lendl (1,071) as the only players to win 1,000 or more matches on the men’s professional tour.

After a sudden end to the match, Federer raised his arms to acknowledge the ‘Federer 1,000’ placards and red-and-white Swiss flags being waved around the stadium.

Ballboys held up 1,000 in big, white numerals near the net during the presentation ceremony, when Federer accepted the trophy from Roy Emerson and a framed montage of images with the words ‘Congratulations Roger, 1,000 match wins’ from Australian great Rod Laver.

“It’s a special moment, I’m glad I got it,” Federer said. “To get to 1,000 match wins in front of you guys … it really means a lot to me. I’ll never forget this match.

” The 33-year-old started the 2015 season with a 996-227 career win-loss record and reached the milestone with victories over Australian wildcards John Millman and James Duckworth, fourth-seeded Grigor Dimitrov and Raonic, whom he now leads 8-1 in head-to-head encounters.

The Aussie fans love an underdog, and backed Raonic while he was down early in the match, with Federer firing eight aces and not facing a break point in the first set. But as the final progressed and an upset loomed, the Pat Rafter Arena crowd got right behind Federer and cheered his every winner.

Federer responded to his slide in the tie-break by serving an ace to open the third set, but he needed all his experience to save three break point chances in the opening game that lasted more than 11 minutes.

Raonic then had to save two breaks points in the fourth and sixth games – after missing two on Federer’s serve in the fifth. The server only conceded one point in the next three games until Raonic was serving to stay in the match. Raonic led 30-15 until Federer produced a pin-point topspin lob that forced an error, and then the double-fault – only his fourth of the match. He hit 49 winners, six more than Federer, but had also had more unforced errors and, surprisingly, fewer aces.

“We all know today was a significant milestone for Roger,” Raonic told the crowd, reflecting on how when he listened to all of Federer’s credits in the introductions before the match he could have sworn he was aiming for his 2,000th win. “I think you need to step it up.”

Read more at ESPN

Tennis: ATP Finals: Andy Murray beats Milos Raonic to keep Finals hopes alive

Britain’s Andy Murray kept his ATP World Tour Finals hopes alive with a straight-sets win over Milos Raonic at the O2 Arena.

Murray would have been been eliminated with a defeat but came through a tense match 6-3 7-5.

He will face Roger Federer in his final Group B encounter on Thursday, with a semi-final place still up for grabs.

Federer earlier beat Kei Nishikori 6-3 6-2 to top the standings after two matches.

“On Sunday, there wasn’t much magic,” said Murray. “Today I came up with some good shots in the right moments. Milos didn’t serve as well as he can and that helped.”

The signs had not been particularly good for Murray heading into Tuesday’s do-or-die contest after a poor opening display against Nishikori and with only one win in four matches against Raonic.

There was plenty on the line for the Canadian too, however, and it was Murray who coped better with the occasion.

That he was able to clinch victory in two sets could prove decisive when the final standings are calculated.

Read more on BBC Sport