Dimitrov defeats home hope Kyrgios to reach Australian Open quarter-finals

Cilic brings up 100 as he makes Open quarters

It took him until the midway point of the second set to send it for restringing, but by then the psychological damage had been done; regular bouts of head-shaking and muttering crept into his game and took his attention off a very evenly-matched opponent who finally hit form after so almost being sent packing by the American qualifier Mackenzie McDonald in round two.

However the 17th seed's well-publicised attitude issues flared up in the fourth as he uttered a string of obscenities and shouted frequently at his box to stand up.

Kyrgios threw all caution to the wind in the third and it paid off as he clawed one set back, but Dimitrov stepped his game up once again in the fourth and found himself serving for the match at 5-4.

The Bulgarian next faces Britain's Kyle Edmund in the quarter-finals. Despite a knee problem that bothered him since Brisbane, he managed to be competitive through all his matches and said he was prepared to play a fifth set against Dimitrov if he had succeeded in taking that fourth-set tiebreak. He started 2018 by winning seven matches in a row, four on his way to the Brisbane title, and three at Melbourne Park this fortnight.

It was Kyrgios who buckled, netting a forehand with the court wide open at 3-3, and Dimitrov suffered no repeat of his earlier wobble as he clinched victory with a brilliant forehand victor.

"Obviously I knew it was always going to be tough".

"I'm very pleased. I felt that I played all four matches on a good quality".

"I feel a lot better this time around".

Dimitrov said he won't get caught up in the moment, or the expected parochial crowd cheering on Kyrgios' attempt to become the first Australian man since 1976 (Mark Edmondson) to win the Australian title.

Several elements of Kyrgios' game were at their most impressive. I thought I played well tonight.

A year ago, Kyrgios bowed out of his home grand slam to spectators' jeers following a tempestuous five-set capitulation to Andreas Seppi in the second round.

No. 2 Roger Federer beat No. 29 Richard Gasquet 6-2, 7-5, 6-4; Chung Hyeon beat No. 4 Alexander Zverev 5-7, 7-6 (3), 2-6, 6-3, 6-0; No. 5 Dominic Thiem beat No. 26 Adrian Mannarino 6-4, 6-2, 7-5; No. 14 Novak Djokovic beat No. 21 Albert Ramos-Vinolas 6-2, 6-3, 6-3; No. 19 Tomas Berdych beat No. 12 Juan Martin del Potro 6-3, 6-3, 6-2; No. 25 Fabio Fognini beat Julien Benneteau 3-6, 6-2, 6-1, 4-6, 6-3.

"Of course, I feel little bit exhausted, but I was able to keep fighting until the end". Still do. When I saw him out here I was so nervous. "I haven't heard about that", Agassi told AAP at the Australian Open. I love competing against him. "That's I think what I did", said Suarez Navarro, one of the few who still uses a one-handed backhand. I want to be better. "So I just told him to believe himself and hopefully he can go all the way".



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