American Sebastian Korda is making an Australian Open run, 25 years after his dad won the tournament.
Korda, the 29th seed, upset No. 7 seed Daniil Medvedev 7-6 (7), 6-3, 7-6 (4), knocking out the Russian who was runner-up in Melbourne the last two years.
Korda advanced to a fourth-round match with No. 10 Hubert Hurkacz of Poland in a top half of the draw that is now without three of its top six players. In the first three rounds, No. 1 Rafael Nadal, No. 11 Cameron Norrie and now Medvedev have been ousted.
Novak Djokovic, the nine-time Australian Open champion and heavy favorite, is in the other half.
AUSTRALIAN OPEN DRAWS: Women | Men
Korda, 22, is the son of Czech Petr Korda, who won the 1998 Australian Open, and younger brother to Nelly Korda and Jessica Korda, world top 20 golfers who have won their sport’s Australian Open.
“I love playing in Australia,” Korda said on court. “My family loves playing in Australia.”
Korda’s live ranking is No. 28, which would be a career high, but, as he noted on court, still fourth-best in his family. Petr reached No. 2. His mom, retired Czech tennis player Regina Rajchrtova, reached No. 26. Nelly has been No. 1 and Jessica No. 8 in golf.
“I’m definitely the worst athlete in the family so far,” Korda joked.
Korda is the highest-ranked American man left in the draw. No. 9 Taylor Fritz was upset in the second round. No. 16 Frances Tiafoe followed his U.S. Open semifinal run last September with a defeat to 18th-seeded Russian Karen Khachanov on Friday.
The last American man to win the Australian Open, Andre Agassi in 2003, is a mentor to Korda.
In the last year, Korda was broken twice while serving for the match against Rafael Nadal, then had a match point on Novak Djokovic‘s serve earlier this month. He lost both matches. Against Medvedev, Korda regained composure after being broken while up 4-3 in the third set.
On the women’s side Friday, No. 1 Iga Swiatek, No. 3 Jessica Pegula and No. 7 Coco Gauff all advanced without dropping more than three games in a set. All will play a major champion in Sunday’s fourth round.
Swiatek, who won the U.S. Open and French Open last year, gets reigning Wimbledon champ Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan. Pegula, the highest seeded American man or woman, faces 2021 French Open champ Barbora Krejcikova of the Czech Republic. Gauff, the 2022 French Open runner-up, plays 2017 French Open champ Jelena Ostapenko of Latvia.
Swiatek and Gauff will meet in the quarterfinals if each wins her next match.
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