French Open, Wimbledon and US Open, you have a tough act to follow.
The 2018 Grand Slam season kicked off with an Australian Open for the ages. Check out 10 of the most noteworthy moments of the tournament:
Third time’s the charm for Caroline Wozniacki
The new world No. 1 finally got the Grand Slam monkey off her back in her third career major final, continuing her stellar play from the past 18 months.
Federer is still delivering
Roger Federer captured his 20th major without dropping a set until the final against Marin Cilic. He started off the year with a perfect run through the Hopman Cup and now, he is riding yet another double-digit winning streak.
Simona Halep's third heartbreak
Is there any player—man or woman—tougher than the Romanian? Pushed to the limits, and beyond, she fought her way through to her third Grand Slam final. She’s 0-3 in those matches, but you can bank on her taking one at some point.
Hyeon Chung? Kyle Edmund? Elise Mertens? It was exciting to see some unseeded new names at the penultimate stage in a major. Expect further breakthroughs from these 20-somethings, who’ve been making some noise for the past couple of years.
From Lleyton Hewitt and Sam Groth’s fairytale doubles run to strong showings by Nick Kyrgios and Ashleigh Barty, Australians were able to root for their own most of the tournament. Melbourne's Dylan Alcott captured both the quad wheelchair singles and doubles crowns (with Heath Davidson).
Sandgren’s run and fallout
One of the most unexpected results was Tennys Sandgren’s run to the quarterfinals on the men’s side. His incredible breakthrough was overshadowed, however, by the uproar over his social media activity.
Right off the bat, three of America’s best female players—Venus Williams, 2017 semifinalist CoCo Vandeweghe and US Open champ Sloane Stephens—were out of the tournament. But a few other stars stepped up with Lauren Davis nearly knocking out Halep and Madison Keys reaching the quarterfinals.
The Kerber comeback
What slump? Angelique Kerber showed last year’s fall from the top of the rankings was a blip. Her unbeaten start to 2018 continued with a run to the semifinals, where she lost to Halep in an epic three-set battle.
Mate Pavic and Oliver Marach entered the Australian Open with two tournament titles in 2018. They left Melbourne with their biggest prize together, extending their unbeaten start to the year. Pavic also won the mixed doubles with Gabriela Dabrowski.
Mate Pavic and @GabyDabrowski defeat @RohanBopanna and @TimeaBabos to win the #AusOpen mixed doubles title! ????— Tennis Channel (@TennisChannel) January 28, 2018
Watch on Tennis Channel ???????????????? https://t.co/CKNOFPsDdP pic.twitter.com/8qSHPIyKzT
Hats off to Marin Cilic
In the half of the draw that contained Rafael Nadal and Grigor Dimitrov, it was the 2014 US Open champion that came through to reach the title match—his second final in three majors.
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