Australian Open 2018: Halep and Kerber star in showstopper, but it’s the end of the road for Edmund on Day 11.

Stock photograph of an Australian Open Tennis Ball. (AAP Image/Dave Hunt) NO ARCHIVING

I’m always amazed by the ignorance shown towards women’s tennis, so many otherwise knowledgeable people dismiss it as inferior to the men’s side. Granted some matches are over before you know it and can be very one sided, but this is true of the men too – you just might not notice it so much over three sets.

We too are of course in an unprecedented although now undoubtedly waning era of quality in the men’s game.

But, if ever there was a showcase in recent times for the rude health of the WTA then Simona Halep’s three set epic victory over the resurgent 2016 champion Angie Kerber was it.

A match oozing with quality that had it all; drama, shot-making, gutsy defence and tactical variety. It was in short, a classic and worthy of the final. The neutrals amongst us may well have wished for Kerber to sneak through, but she will be back for sure and Halep deserved this just as much.

For all my talk of the formbook in tatters this fortnight, we have the top two seeds meeting on Saturday’s final. Caroline Wozniacki proved too good for Elise Mertens who at times looked a little lost at how to handle the bulletproof defence of the Dane. The Belgian rallied late in the second set and had set points but – come the tiebreak – couldn’t deal with an opponent slowly going up the gears.

The first of the men’s semi finals saw the dream run of Kyle Edmund come to an end in emphatic fashion as Marin Cilic blew the Brit apart quite frankly. Cilic was a massive step up from the opponents faced so far by Kyle – yes very much Dimitrov included – the Czech is looking unplayable. Edmund looked weary and rather spent, but take nothing away from the man, this has been a phenomenal tournament, let’s hope he makes it a springboard for consistent success at this level.



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