Published: Sun, January 26, 2020
Sport | By Ruben Hill

Thiem `freaking out` in five-set Australian Open scare

Thiem `freaking out` in five-set Australian Open scare

The 27-year old from South Australia went down 6-2 5-7 6-7 6-1 6-2 to the Austrian on Melbourne Arena, but put in a fantastic showing.

Thiem was rattled to the extent he gave up the second set on the back of two unforced errors and it was the Australian who secured the third set on a tiebreak with a thumping ace before emitting a primal roar of delight.

But Bolt showed true Aussie grit in the following two sets to make sure Thiem would have to play out all five.

World number 5 Dominic Thiem admitted that he "freaked out" after losing two sets before winning again to defeat Alex Bolt's courageous home hope at Thursday's Australian Open.

Thiem is among a clutch of players tipped to win a Major after reaching the last two Roland Garros finals, but he was exposed at times by a player ranked 140 who controlled much of the second and third sets.

The US Open finalist called for a medical timeout while leading 5-0 in the second set and needing treatment to stop the bleeding. I think body language was not the best because it was, of course, in my head that I should be 2-0 up, 6-2, 6-4, I should be up. I'm just happy to be through because this was an ugly match for me.

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The Sydneysider was ultra-impressive in a 6-2 7-6 (7-5) 6-2 demolition of Jaume Munar on Thursday, moving into the last 32 and equalling his 2019 performance at Melbourne Park. But the crowd was roaring for Bolt and he remarkably broke, with the tide turning as he rallied to clinch the set 7-5.

Medvedev avoided four break point opportunities to stay in the sixth game of the third set, and the game ended strongly. Fifth-seeded team had to deal with a partisan crowd on another covered court at Melbourne Arena, but enjoyed the occasion.

Germany seventh seed Alexander Zverev, who has yet to go beyond the fourth round in Australia, beat Belarusian Egor Gerasimov 7-6 (7-5) 6-4 7-5. "Alex played great, with great crowd support".

Zverev, who won the ATP Finals two years ago, has pledged $10,000 for every match he wins at the very least. "There is a big difference when you play three hours and 20 minutes under these conditions or when you play outside at 40 degrees for four and a half hours".

The rain stopped late morning and the weather is mostly cloudy with gusting winds.

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