Published: Mon, January 22, 2018
Sport | By Gary Shelton

'Smart' tennis key to Grand Slam success for Madison

'Smart' tennis key to Grand Slam success for Madison

Keys, the only American woman to reach the fourth round, said she feels like she's playing without pressure since returning from her wrist injury. "This is the first big match that I played in 2018". She then played only one match after the U.S. Open before shutting down her season early to let the wrist heal.

Seeded 17th Keys overpowered the French eighth seed 6-3 6-2, firing 32 winners on Rod Laver Arena on Monday.

Keys is yet to drop a set at Melbourne Park and is averaging a brisk 62.5 minutes per match as she tries to reach a second straight Grand Slam final.

Coming into the match against Garcia, she had only dropped 14 games - the second fewest among the women through three rounds, just behind Angelique Kerber's 13 games. Dimitrov avenged a loss two weeks ago to Nick Kyrgios with a 7-6 (3), 7-6 (4), 4-6, 7-6 (4) win over Nick Kyrgios on Sunday night. "It was nice to win this match". The only time he's failed to reach at least the quarters was previous year when he lost in the third round to Roger Federer.

After a tight tussle in the opening four games against No. 19-seeded Rybarikova, a Wimbledon semifinalist past year, Wozniacki dominated the fourth-round match and conceded only six points in the second set.

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Nadal will next play 2014 U.S. Open champion Marin Cilic, who collected his 100th Grand Slam match win with a 6-7 (2), 6-3, 7-6 (0), 7-6 (3) victory over No. 10 Pablo Carreno Busta. Keys is far less of the player who goes for broke time and time again, and she does a better job of controlling her unforced errors.

Sixth-seeded Karolina Pliskova had 11 aces and beat No. 29 Lucie Safarova 7-6 (6), 7-5 in a match featuring just one service break.

"I'm really proud I could stay focused and make every point very focused and concentrated". I also question just how much Kerber has left after having to pull out all of the stops in her fourth round match, as it can be tough to rebound from such a performance. "So as incredible as that run was, the combination of being exhausted from that and having a wrist that still wasn't 100 per cent flawless, I just needed to kind of shut it down, calm down, and then I was really excited to start the new season".

The win set Kerber up with a clash against American Keys, a semi-finalist in 2015 who has found a new lease of life under the guidance of former great Lindsay Davenport.

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