Australian Open: Cameron Norrie’s run ended by Alexander Zverev after superb fourth-round battle | Tennis News

Alexander Zverev shatters British hopes by beating Cameron Norrie after a four-hour battle on Margaret Court Arena; we will bring you live scores, reports, analysis and features from Melbourne

British No 1 Cameron Norrie suffered an agonising end to his Australian Open run as he was pipped in a fifth-set tie-break by Alexander Zverev after a superb fourth-round tussle.

Norrie broke new ground with a brilliant attacking display to defeat Casper Ruud on Saturday and again showed the new dimensions he has added to his game to push the sixth seed all the way.

Having not managed to win a set in their four previous meetings, Norrie came from behind twice to force a final-set decider but it was Zverev who moved through to his 11th Grand Slam quarter-final after a 7-5 3-6 6-3 4-6 7-6 (10-3) victory.

Norrie vs Zverev: Tale of the Tape

Norrie Match Stats Zverev
10 Aces 15
2 Double Faults 6
69% 1st serve win percentage 76%
52% 2nd serve win percentage 44%
39/59 Net points won 28/42
4/10 Break points won 4/14
56 Total winners 54
63 Unforced errors 41
153 Total points won 166

There were few rallies of any kind in the first set, with serve dominating until 19th seed Norrie, who was trying to beat a top-10 opponent at a Grand Slam for the first time, was broken at 5-5.

Zverev immediately came under pressure on serve for the first time but saved a break point with a forehand onto the line, and looked to have taken control of the contest when he broke again to lead 3-2 in the second.

However, Norrie played what must be one of the best returning games of his career to hit straight back, finishing it off with a stinging backhand cross-court winner.

Norrie will leave Australia knowing that he can mix it with the best players in the world on the biggest stage

Norrie was not finished there, the 28-year-old showing his new-found aggression and willingness to mix up his tactics to pile more pressure on Zverev in his next service game.

The German saved two break points but then mis-hit a forehand on the third and suddenly Norrie was serving for the set.

It was far from straightforward for the Briton but he saved four break points before taking it, fortuitously, when a forehand hit the top of the net and dropped over.

A poor service game at 1-2 in the third set was enough for Zverev to take it and though Norrie pushed hard at the beginning of the fourth, Zverev managed to save two break points in the second game.

Zverev celebrates reaching the quarter-finals in Melbourne

However, he was powerless to stop Norrie forcing a decider, the 28-year-old creating two set points at 4-5 and taking the first with a delicate half-volley.

Norrie was bullying Zverev, one of the most powerful players on tour, at times from the baseline, while his drop shots and short angled slices kept the German guessing.

They exchanged breaks of serve at the start of the fifth set while Norrie survived a tense game at 3-3, saving three more break points.

Both men managed to hold serve through to a first-to-10-points tie-break but there Norrie’s resistance ran out, with Zverev clinching the win after four hours and five minutes to end British interest in the singles.

Brief interruption by protester

Ball kids clean up paper that was thrown onto Margaret Court Arena by a protestor

The match was briefly interrupted by a protester during the sixth game of the third set when a woman began throwing pieces of paper onto the court from the front row of the stands on Margaret Court Arena.

She was grabbed by two members of the crowd, who forcibly escorted her up the steps before returning to their seats.

The protester was escorted up the steps and out of the Arena

Zverev will next face Carlos Alcaraz, who delivered a demonstration of his title credentials in a 6-4 6-4 6-0 victory over Miomir Kecmanovic

The Spaniard has dropped only one set in making it through to the last eight and saw off Serbian Kecmanovic in just an hour and 49 minutes on Rod Laver Arena.

“I pushed him to the limit on every ball, on every point and obviously he has played a lot of tough matches before this one, so probably physically he wasn’t at 100 per cent,” said the Spaniard.

“I took my chances in every set and I thought it was a very good match for myself.

“Thanks to that I’m finding my best level, feeling like home is always great. I hope to still feel better and better every day.”

Robson: Hard to believe Alcaraz can play better

Speaking on Eurosport, former British No 1 Laura Robson said: “That was a bit of a clinic. It’s hard to believe he can play much better than that.

“Kecmanovic was looking like a bit of an average player because he just couldn’t compete with Alcaraz’s speed, pace, agility – all these things that you just find slightly mind-boggling, the fact that he can do everything on court, and enjoy himself, and get the crowd get involved, and so much more.

“It was just phenomenal tonight.”

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