Australian Open 2018 | Rohan Bopanna and Timea Babos progress into semis; Marin Cilic advances to finals

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Australian Open 2018 | Rohan Bopanna and Timea Babos progress into semis; Marin Cilic advances to finals

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SportsCafe Desk


Indian-Hungarian pair Bopanna and Babos entered into the mixed doubles semi-finals as they beat Romania-American pair of J Cabal and A. Spears. Sixth-seeded Marin Cilic created history as he booked a spot in the final of the Australian Open defeating England's Kyle Edmund 6-2, 7-6 (4), 6-2. 

After the likes of Leander Paes, Purav Raja, Yuki Bhambri and Divij Shiran, all bowed out in the initial stages of the competition, Bopanna remains the only Indian in the Australian Open. And he moved to the semi final of the tournament along with Hungarian partner Timea Bebos as they got the better of the better of Juan Sebastian Cabal- Abigail Spears duo beating them 6-4, 7-6 (5) in a one hour and 15 minutes match. 

The hard-fought encounter saw Bopanna-Bebos dig deep to squeeze out a win as Cabal and Spears were clearly enjoying the better break point conversion rate, using three out of the seven that landed their way as opposed to Bopanna and Babos' 4-12 record. However, the Indian-Hungarian maintained a consistent lead throughout the match and managed to get more winners in both their first and second serves. 

In the end, they won 73 points against their rivals' 68. Bopanna and Babos will now take on Spanish-Brazilian combination of Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez and Marcelo Demoliner in the semi-finals, who overcame the challenge of the Australian duo, Storm Sanders and Marc Polmans. 

Croatia’s Marin Cilic became only the second man after the so-called big four of - Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray- to make it to the final of the Australian Open spanning over a period of 10 years. The other was Stanislas Wawrinka, who won the competition in 2014. Marin Cilic beat Kyle Edmund 6-2, 7-6 (4), 6-2 to rise to a career-high ranking of No. 3 by and reaching the final. He is now in line to face the winner of the second semi-final on Friday between Federer and Hyeon Chung of South Korea.

In the women's singles category, World No. 1 Simona Halep saw off 2016 champion Angelique Kerber to reach her first Australian Open final. The Romanian, who is twice a French Open runner-up, saved two match points on her way to a 6-3 4-6 9-7 victory. 

Halep will now face 27-year-old seeded second Caroline Wozniacki, who defeated Belgian Elise Mertens to reach her first Australian Open final 6-3 7-6 (7-2) in Melbourne. The winner of the final between Halep and Wozniacki will rise to number one in the world rankings, which gives the final some more razzmatazz.

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