Australian Open: Dimitrov upsets Thiem, Serena proceeds to quarter-finals
World number 21 Grigor Dimitrov stunned last year's finalist Dominic Thiem to book a spot in his fourth Australian Open quarter-final. The Bulgarian trounced third seed Thiem 6-4, 6-4, 6-0 in just over two hours on the Rod Laver Arena. On the other hand, 23-time Grand Slam champion Serena Williams defeated seventh seed Aryna Sabalenka 6-4, 2-6, 6-4 to book her spot in quarter-finals.
Dimitrov bounced back after reeling behind
Thiem dominated the first set initially, claiming six game points for a 4-1 lead. However, the increase in Thiem's unforced error count helped Dimitrov bounce back eventually. Hence, the latter won five straight games. The second set also saw a close contest before Dimitrov won it 6-4. Meanwhile, the final set was a 21-minute affair as the Austrian could win only five points.
Dimitrov struck 25 winners in the match
Dimitrov struck 25 winners, including 10 aces, while Thiem committed 41 unforced errors and won just nine of 28 points on his second serve. Previously, Thiem claimed a stunning victory over Kyrgios in the third round. The 27-year-old is now 4-2 in the 2021 season. He led Austria at the ATP Cup before the start of the Australian Open.
Serena enters quarter-finals for the 13th time
In the women's section, Serena outclassed Sabalenka of Belarus in a game that lasted two hours and nine minutes. The former world number one denied Sabalenka the first Grand Slam quarter-final appearance of her career. Serena fired 30 winners, including nine aces, to enter the quarter-finals for the 13th time in her career. Notably, Sabalenka had won 18 of her last 19 matches.
Serena's quest for 24th Grand Slam title continues
Serena continues her quest for a staggering eighth Australian Open title and historic 24th Grand Slam title. She will now face either two-time Grand Slam champion Simona Halep or reigning Roland Garros champion Iga Swiatek in the quarter-finals.
I'll be ready for either player: Serena
Speaking after her win, an elated Serena Williams said, "I still hadn't reached my peak. I was like, 'Okay, Serena, you got this, just keep going'." "At this point I'm ready for either player. It's quarterfinals of a Grand Slam. I've been here more times than I could even count. That's the right attitude for me to have. I'll be ready for either player."