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Federer faces Chung hurdle to 30th Slam final — Tennis

26 Enero 2018, 04:21 | Cornelio Vivanco

South Korea's Hyeon Chung celebrates after defeating United States Tennys Sandgren in their quarterfinal at the Australian Open

South Korea's Hyeon Chung celebrates after defeating United States' Tennys Sandgren in their quarterfinal at the Australian Open

In many ways, Hyeon Chung seems to be Roger Federer's nightmare Australian Open semi-finals opponent.

"It's amazing to watch him and great to see him coming up nicely".

"I'm looking forward to play against him". Not under the circumstances I was hoping to (reach the final).

"I don't know exactly how he returns and how he serves". Those start the points.

The gutted Spaniard was forced to retire with a hip problem early in the fifth set of his Australian Open quarter-final against sixth seed Marin Cilic on Tuesday.

Chung, 21, pulled off his greatest win over an ailing Djokovic to become the first South Korean player to reach a Grand Slam quarter-final.

Chung, who won the inaugural Next Gen ATP Finals title in November, was too consistent for Sandgren, a 26-year-old American who had never won a match at a Grand Slam tournament or beaten a top-10 player until last week. But I must admit, as well, you do take the faster matches whenever you can.

World number two Federer now turns his attention to Cilic, who he has only lost to once in nine meetings.


Cilic has beaten Chung on all three occasions they have played, most recently in Brisbane in 2016.

Sandgren denied in Melbourne that he supported far-right figures and said who he followed on Twitter "doesn't matter".

With his success Down Under, Chung is already driving sales of tennis products in South Korea.

Bashing winners for fun he repeated the trick twice to grab the opening set in 33 minutes.

"He just loves the environment", Chung's South African coach Neville Godwin said. They couldn't really be more different. A victory on Sunday would give Federer a record Grand Slam title No. 20.

Defending champion Roger Federer has entered into his 43rd Grand Slam Semi-finals by knocking out his arch-rival Tomas Berdych by 7-6, 6-3, 6-4 on Wednesday.

"I hardly know Chung". I make semis, I beat like Sascha, Novak, the other good players.

"I think I'm not tired because I win. I'm just trying to fight 100 per cent", he said.


Some fantastic forehand strokes and fine net play proved too much for Chung. Chung, not the all-time leader in career earnings, has made about 1.5 percent of that ($1.71 million).

Ku Jeong-woo, a sociology professor at Sungkyunkwan University in Seoul, told newspaper Chosun Ilbo that Chung is an inspiration to young Koreans because he "overcame obstacles like his bad eyesight, and he earned his victory fairly and with confidence".

"I was thinking like that".

"I think it's an interesting match for me", added Federer, lining up for a record 14th Australian Open semi-final.

Earlier, Timea Babos of Hungary and Kristina Mladenovic of France became the first players from their respective countries to lift the Australian Open women's doubles crown.

"Somebody who is in the semis, to me, is two steps away. And at one point, it's just too much and you can't take it anymore - you can't go on", Federer said.

Who will the Australian Open?

Federer broke Chung's serve four times off 11 break points and only had one break point on his own service. I stopped missing and moved better.




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