Novak Djokovic loses to Stanislas Wawrinka in Aussie Open quarterfinals
MELBOURNE, Australia -- No. 8 Stanislas Wawrinka upset three-time defending champion Novak Djokovic 2-6, 6-4, 6-2, 3-6, 9-7 in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open on Tuesday, yet another thrilling five-set match in their increasingly riveting head-to-head series.
Wawrinka snapped a 14-match losing streak to the world No. 2 and ended Djokovic's streak of 14 Grand Slam semifinals. The 28-year-old Swiss also exacted revenge for losses to Djokovic in the fourth round of the 2013 Australian Open (which ended 10-8 in the fifth set) and semifinals of the U.S. Open (which went 6-4 in the fifth).
Bidding for his fifth title Down Under, Djokovic lost for the first time since the U.S. Open final. He entered Tuesday with a 28-match winning streak and 13 victories in a row against top-10 opponents.
Wawrinka broke Djokovic in the final game to clinch the victory in four hours. Serving at 30-all, Djokovic couldn't handle Wawrinka's mishit service return and then missed a volley on match point.
The winner wasted no time taking to Twitter for his unique reaction:
— Stanislas Wawrinka (@stanwawrinka) January 21, 2014
Wawrinka will face Tomas Berdych next, the first semifinal appearance here for both men. Berdych defeated David Ferrer earlier Tuesday.
• Djokovic's streak of 14 Grand Slam semifinals was the second longest in history, behind Roger Federer's 23.
• Djokovic was looking to become the first man in the Open era to win four consecutive Australian Open titles.
• Wawrinka beat Djokovic for the first time since 2006.
• Wawrinka improved to 3-15 against Djokovic.
• Wawrinka had been 2-28 against players ranked in the top two, including 0-6 at Grand Slam tournaments, according to the ITF. His only victories came at the Monte Carlo Masters, against No. 2 Federer in 2009 and No. 2 Andy Murray in 2013.
• Wawrinka joins Federer as the only Swiss men to make multiple Grand Slam semifinals.
• The first question and answer of Wawrinka's post-match news conference:
Q. Nobody beats Wawrinka 15 times in a row.
STANISLAS WAWRINKA: 14 is already enough (smiling).
• Wawrinka on his victory: "I tried everything. He's an amazing champion. He never gives up. I'm really, really, really, really, really, really happy.''
• Wawrinka on persevering despite minimal success against Djokovic, Nadal and Federer: "You have to deal with that. You have to fight. I know that the only thing I can control is what I'm doing off the court: my practice, how I do my schedule. I always try to improve, to find solution when I play against the top player."
• Djokovic on the loss: He deserved this win today. I congratulate him. There is nothing I can say. I gave it my best. I gave it all. I tried to fight until the last point, as I did in a very similar match we did last year in the fourth round, same court, but it wasn't to be this time."
• Djokovic on losing the final two points of the match: "I can say I was lucky with some shots last year in our match. This time it was him that had luck a little bit on 30‑All, this mishit return. Then an easy volley for me on a match point. But this is sport. He showed his mental strength and he deserved to win."
• Djokovic on his initial work with new coach Boris Becker: "It's been the first official tournament for us. I'm satisfied with things that we've been talking about, working on. Of course, it's unfortunate that we finished the tournament in quarterfinals. But it's the beginning of the season and we'll see what's coming next."
Watching night session QF at #happyslam it doesn't get much better then this! pic.twitter.com/8YuqUcQami
— Roger Federer (@rogerfederer) January 21, 2014
So deserving for Stan the man #nevergiveup #whatamatch #sohappy
— Roger Federer (@rogerfederer) January 21, 2014
Wawrinka never fails to amaze me. His fight is drool quality #whatachamp — Alison Riske (@Riske4rewards) January 21, 2014
I think Novak's entourage might've been looking at the US east coast weather. Didn't know light flurries were expected in Melbourne ;) — Bethanie MattekSands (@BMATTEK) January 21, 2014
This is why tennis is the best game in the world! Eating hot soup but got goose bumps ... — Kim Clijsters (@Clijsterskim) January 21, 2014
A lung busting yell from Djokovic as he breaks for 5-3 in the 4th. Scarey - what a competitor. — Mike Dickson (@Mike_Dickson_DM) January 21, 2014
death, taxes, Stan-Nole five-setters — Ricky Dimon (@RD_Tennistalk) January 21, 2014
Interesting Becker standing up there to make himself seen - he isn't from the Lendl school of Madame Tussauds courtside demeanour. — Mike Dickson (@Mike_Dickson_DM) January 21, 2014
Watching Nole and Stan battle it out! What a game! pic.twitter.com/YdpzxSX5LA — Caroline Wozniacki (@CaroWozniacki) January 21, 2014
You have got to be kidding me. Bloody rain!!! #Djokovic #Wawrinka — Anne Keothavong (@annekeothavong) January 21, 2014
The big question: will Boris Becker's remaining time as Djokovic's coach be measured in months, weeks, days, hours, or minutes? #ausopen — Ben Rothenberg (@BenRothenberg) January 21, 2014
The bar just continues to be raised
— Patrick McEnroe (@PatrickMcEnroe) January 21, 2014
Well, I'll be a monkey's uncle.. Well done, @stanwawrinka,@StarWingSM
— Chris Evert (@ChrissieEvert) January 21, 2014
This post has been updated. Photos via Getty Images.