Rafael Nadal on Friday, Day 5 of the first Grand Slam of the year defeated Karen Khachanov of Russia at the Rod Laver Arena in the third round.
The Spaniard started dominating in the first set that ended 6-3 in his favour in 28 minutes while the third set ended in Russia’s favour but that wasn’t enough as Nadal outlasted Khachanov 6-3 6-3 3-6 6-1 at last to advance to the fourth round.
The dream is still alive ✨
— #AusOpen (@AustralianOpen) January 21, 2022
Nadal who from World No. Three was dropped to World No. Six previous year because of missing a lot of tennis events including the Olympics and Wimbledon, bounced back to Five by winning the ATP Cup Summer Set title this year. The 35-year-old was sidelined for four months with a foot injury before he came back with a win in Melbourne.
13-times French Open champion and 20 times Grand Slam champion is claiming to defend his 21st at the Australian Open to overtake Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in their absence at the tournament.
Nadal is one of the favourites to win the tournament while Djokovic is out of the competition following his visa controversy and medical exemption and his dream of defending his 21st Slam gets vanished as he loses his bid at the court to stay in Australia. Medvedev will not be easy to go on as the Russian is targeting to become World No. One by winning the title. The trophy will give him points that will help him grab Djokovic’s No. 1 rank.