Australian Open

Raonic blasts into Open Round 4

2015-01-24 11:15
Milos Raonic (File)

Melbourne - Power-serving eighth seed Milos Raonic smashed 22 aces on the way to a straight sets demolition of Benjamin Becker to reach the fourth round at the Australian Open on Saturday.

The Canadian defeated the German 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 in 1hr 41min on Hisense Arena to ease into the round of 16 where he will face Spanish 12th seed Feliciano Lopez.

The victory means Raonic has equalled his best performance at Melbourne Park after reaching the round of 16 as a qualifier in 2011.

He served at 71 percent and clocked a fastest serve at 225 kph (181 mph) among the many thunderbolts he hurtled down at Becker.

Raonic, 24, is on track for a likely semi-final with world number one Novak Djokovic if he can get past Lopez.

"I do believe in myself a lot. I do believe I have a lot more answers than I had last year," he said.

"And I do believe I can use them in the right way to put myself in as good a possibility to win that I can."

The Canadian hit 46 winners and only 19 unforced errors, while Becker made just 21 winners.

"Last year I made my first quarter-final (French Open) and followed it up with my first semi-final (Wimbledon)," added Raonic.

"I have a better understanding of how to deal with things, a better understanding of how to play second weeks.

"To be honest, the tournament really does start the second week of the slams. It's time to sort of buckle down."

Raonic was the first man from his country since 1908 to reach a Grand Slam semi at Wimbledon and said it was great time for Canadian tennis, with women's seventh seed Eugenie Bouchard also playing well in Melbourne.

"I'm grateful to be a part of it and let's keep changing those dates, let's keep breaking new records," he said.

Becker, 33, whose serve was broken five times, showed little threat to Raonic after coming from behind to eliminate Australian dual Grand Slam champion Lleyton Hewitt in five sets in the previous round.

Read more on:    atp tour  |  australian open  |  milos raonic  |  tennis


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