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2011 Australian Open Round 4: Tomas Berdych vs Fernando Verdasco

Posted on January 23, 2011 at 8:17 PM

Tomas Berdych's road into the round of 16 was relatively painless, as the sixth-seeded Czech knocked off Richard Gasquet in three sets. He'll meet Spaniard Fernando Verdasco in the fourth round. Berdych, last year's Wimbledon finalist and Roland Garros semi-finalist, will attempt to reach the Australian Open quarter-finals for the first time.


Order of Play - Sunday, January 23, 2011

Margaret Court Arena - Match Start 11:00 AM

Legends' Doubles

Jacco Eltingh (NED)/Paul Haarhuis (NED) vs Guy Forget (FRA)/Mats Wilander (SWE)

Men's Doubles - 3rd Round

Carsten Ball (AUS)/Chris Guccione (AUS) vs Max Mirnyi (BLR) [2]/Daniel Nestor (CAN) [2]

Not Before:2:30 PM - Men's Singles - 4th Round

Tomas Berdych (CZE) [6] vs Fernando Verdasco (ESP) [9]


Mixed Doubles - 1st Round

Mirjana Lucic (CRO)/Bernard Tomic (AUS) vs Barbora Zahlavova Strycova (CZE) [8]/Oliver Marach (AUT) [8]


Legends' Doubles

Todd Woodbridge (AUS)/Mark Woodforde (AUS) vs Mansour Bahrami (IRI)/Cedric Pioline (FRA) 



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H2H Tomas Berdych / Fernando Verdasco



Berdych through


Berdych was just as impressive in taking apart Spanish No.9 seed Fernando Verdasco at Margaret Court Arena, the Czech recovering from an early break of his serve to completely demoralise Verdasco 6-4 6-2 6-3.




Click the Thumbnail to view score and stats


Berdych Powers into Quarterfinals at Australian Open!... will face Djokovic

 Ace Berdych! 

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January 23, 2011 | by ATP Staff

Berdych proved to be too strong for ninth seed Fernando Verdasco, beating the Spaniard 6-4 6-2 6-3 in just under two hours.

Verdasco broke serve in the third game of the first set, but Berdych raised his game and took charge of the rallies. Verdasco hit 17 unforced errors in the 41-minute opener, hitting a double fault and a forehand error to finish.

In the second set, Verdasco saved two break points from 0/40 in the second game but Berdych converted his third opportunity with a forehand winner. Six games later, another forehand error by Verdasco handed Berdych the set.

Berdych took a 4-1 lead in the third set, courtesy of a service break in the second game, and closed out the match with two aces for a service hold to love."

"It was a great match for me today" said Berdych, who committed just eight unforced errors. "Only maybe the beginning of the first set, I lost my serve and then needed to fight back. I think it was really a key to the match."

"It's definitely one of the parts of my game that I was trying to improve; being aggressive on court without too many mistakes. To do it in the fourth round of a Grand Slam against an opponent like this is even better for me."


Berdych delighted with victory over Verdasco


Q. Was that a good match for you now approaching the finals?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Finals? Which finals?

Q. Quarterfinals.

TOMAS BERDYCH: Quarterfinals sure, sorry. I didn't hear. Yeah, definitely. It was a great match for me today. Only maybe the beginning of the first set that I lost my serve, and then needs to fight back for next two games to get it back. That was really tough one and was very important for me, because I think it was a kind of really key of the match.

Then he went a little bit down, and I took over him and starts to play really well with confidence. Then I was playing really the game what I want to do and I was playing well.

Q. Did the scoreline surprise you? It was pretty straight sets win. Did you expect more from him?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Well, I mean, I'm expecting first of all what I'm going to do on court and how is my game going to be and then what's the other going to do it's not too important for me. Just a matter of my game and my game was great today.

I was playing well. Just looks that it was, yeah, straight three sets.

Q. Nine unforced errors in nearly two hours. Can you recall having a Grand Slam match of that standard?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Yeah, I mean, it's definitely one of the parts of my game that I was trying to improve, that I can still be aggressive enough on court but not with too many mistakes. That's the way what I need to go.

You know, to do it in the fourth round of the Grand Slam with an opponent like this it's even better for me. Just showed that all the hard work what we've done with my coach was good, was working. I hope I can keep it up.

Q. If it worries you at all, but everyone before a championship talks about Federer, Nadal, Murray, Djokovic. I think people forget about you and how good you are. Does that get under your skin a little bit?

TOMAS BERDYCH: No, definitely not. I mean, probably it's just the way of for me, just way of I can just smile about those things. You know, that's just the way of somebody around the courts are talking about someone possible winners and stuff like that.

For me, the important one is go on court and play well and doesn't matter what's going to happen. So far I'm in quarterfinals, so doing well. Beat all the guys that I was like in the ranking behind which is important for me. Now pretty much we will see.

Q. Does it bother you at all when Lucie loses and it's a very close match? Have you ever had a time in the past where that discourages you?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Well, I think she did a great match yesterday. That's the match is what she needs. You know, similar situation that I had couple years ago that she likes to play big matches, but they are just close. To beat second player in the world is not every day. Probably she's on the good run. If that's going to keep it like that, going to stay healthy. Just show that she can play well and she can make some trouble of the big players as well.

I think she did a good job.

Q. Is it discouraging that she plays so well and hitting the winners and the other player is being defensive, just that little bit in the second set. She was hitting bigger shots than Zvonareva. Zvonareva was very defensive and it was too bad because maybe she had chances.

TOMAS BERDYCH: Yeah, I mean, she had chances, but that's the way what she's playing. Pretty much we had a similar game. I was, yeah, kind of similar like she, that I was like to play aggressive. But if you want to do better, then you still need to bring something more to the game. That was the thing that I was talking there, you know, stay more patient as well. Too much mistakes.

Yeah, that's the way of all like steps in the career. I think she knows what she needs to do, and she's going to do it well.

Q. It's been suggested that the courts here are as slow as a lot of players can remember. Do you think that suits you or not at all?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Tough to say. I just lost one set. I'm in quarterfinals. Pretty much it suits well.

Q. Looking forward to playing on Rod Laver?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Well, I hope so. Maybe. Even maybe we going to go Show Court 3. Just depends. Doesn't matter.

Q. You played so many times on Show Court 3 or Margaret Court. Do you feel really comfortable there?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Yeah, it's a nice court. I mean, it's nice to play there. So far win almost all matches I played there. Yeah, I mean, I'm feeling good there.

But, you know, I mean, it's just the way of the next round is going to be on the other arenas, and so far I have only win in Wimbledon center court. Hopefully I can do it here and have some winning matches on center here as well.

Q. Can you let us know how you got the cheer squad? Where did they come from?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Yeah, it's already kind of long story, because I met them really like four, maybe five years ago already. At the time, they were like three, four, maybe five of them. As you can see these days, there is like 15, 20 young people.

You know, they just coming here. I had a chance last year. They came to Brisbane as well, Kooyong this year. They really enjoy it. Especially this time in Australia it's the holidays. They're staying here. They're all Aussies, so it's no one from Czech in this group. For me, it's great to have this kind of support.

It's just really nice.

Q. Do you know whether they're all from here or other parts of Australia?

TOMAS BERDYCH: I don't know. Pretty much there is quite many of them that I wouldn't know all the places that they are living. But pretty much they are from these kind of areas around Melbourne.

Q. Do you have anywhere else in the world where grown, bare chested men hug each other and cheer you on?

TOMAS BERDYCH: No, no. Definitely not. I mean, that's really a nice part of this tournament. As you can see, also in the other groups, you know, like the Spanish and Croatian people, all the other, Sweden. It's always part of this Grand Slam. It's very nice that I can be one of the players that have this really nice group. They're just enjoying holidays, coming every day for the tennis. I think they have fun.

Q. Have they asked you for tickets?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Yeah, I have to do tickets for them.

Q. Particularly on the big courts, is it going to be difficult to get them in?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Yeah, definitely it will be. We'll see. Try my best.

Q. How do you like the matchup with Djokovic?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Well, I just to have try to forget the last two meetings that we did together and try to think about the match we played in London actually in Wimbledon.

But on the other way, very important is just going to be try to look what's happen before. The important thing is going to be what I'm going to do on court and try to concentrate the game I was playing, especially today, the day before, and try to, you know, continue with this game, with this my aggression game. That's going to be the way of kind of my preparation.

Q. When things are not going too well, do you think back to Wimbledon?

TOMAS BERDYCH: Well, it's already past. You know, it's not the way that I would be on court, not feeling good and that I would be sitting and, Well, you know, thinking back what happened in Wimbledon. It's already half year ago. You know, it's a great results, of course, but it's not time to be thinking about that on court or before the matches.

You can just think about that, I don't know, when you're sitting at home and just talking about tennis or whatever. But not before the game or in the game. That's not time for that. You need to just be really focused what's coming up in the next point and that's it.

FastScripts by ASAP Sports


match point

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from live comments

BERDYCH 6-4 6-2 6-3 - WINNER! Before you know it, three match points - and an ace down the middle to finish it! Verdasco looks happy for it to all be over and is off court quicker than I can type the sentence saying he's gone, but Berdych laps up the crowd's cheers for a while yet. Berdych into the quarters where he'll face a mouth watering clash with Novak Djokovic!

Interview on court after his victory over Verdasco


Berdych too good for hurt Verdasco

Sunday, 23 January, 2011 | By Georges Homsi

On paper, Tomas Berdych may have been a slight favourite before this round of 16 match against Australian Open 2008 semifinalist Fernando Verdasco. The Czech is better ranked (No.6) than the Spaniard (No.9), and was leading their head-to-head 6-4. But his disappointing last six months of 2010 left a question mark on his ability to be fully ready to compete again at the highest level. And, with Verdasco gaining in confidence after recovering from a left ankle injury early this month and a thrilling second-round victory over Davis Cup winner Janko Tipsarevic, there was little doubt that this was to be Berdych's first major test of 2011.

Verdasco was the first one to take the lead with a break in the third game, on an easy forehand mistake by the Czech. But dropping his serve seemed to have a wakening effect on Berdych. He suddenly began taking charge of the rallies, giving his shots more pace and depth, and was loudly cheered by dozens of colourful Czech supporters proudly holding their flags and singing his name. And luckily for him Verdasco was being generous, seeming to have problems moving around the court. As Berdych immediately broke back and went to lead 3-2, the Spanish lefty looked distracted by the tape holding his left ankle, and took a few minutes to re-adjust it. Two games later, he called the physio onto court, still bothered by an injury which had perturbed his year-end preparation and his season start. Serving at 4-5, a Verdasco double fault gave the Czech two set points, immediately converted as a result of a clumsy Spanish forehand into the net. It was Verdasco's 17th unforced error, ending an opening set which lasted 41 minutes.

It looked as though Verdasco was determined to react by dictating his own pace rather than undergoing his opponent's rhythm. But when you are not comfortable moving, the solution clearly lies elsewhere. Down 0-40 in the second game, Verdasco saved the first two break points, but on the third, a beautiful forehand inside out from the Czech put him out of balance, and offered Berdych the break. The Spaniard was never in a position to break back. Beaming with confidence, and up 5-2, Berdych hit a magnificent winning backhand return to get a first set point. Moments later, Verdasco netted a forehand to go down two sets to love.

The Berdych festival only got better. He seemed now on top of his game, dictating play with authority, and committing almost no unforced errors. Against an opponent of this calibre, Verdasco had to be at his very best in order to have a chance. He was not. Berdych broke in the second game, and went on to lead 4-1. There he found himself four times within one point of a 5-1 lead with his serve to follow, but Verdasco's pride saved the situation. It was just delaying the inevitable. Up 5-3, Berdych didn't show any doubt concluding on a love game and two aces to win 6-4 6-2 6-3 in just an hour and 58 minutes.

Committing just nine unforced errors, he gained the right to challenge Australian Open 2008 champion Novak Djokovic for a place in the last four.

"I have to say my ankle was a factor today. I had a problem with the tape, and a blister on the Achilles which was very painful. I just couldn't move normally, and against a player like Berdych it makes things impossible. But I don't like to retire" said Verdasco.

"It was a great match for me today" Berdych said afterwards. "Only maybe the beginning of the first set, I lost my serve and then needed to fight back. I think it was really a key to the match."

Berdych showed great satisfaction in his ability to play aggressive tennis while committing so few unforced errors.

"It's definitely one of the parts of my game that I was trying to improve; being aggressive on court without too many mistakes. And to do it in the fourth round of a Grand Slam against an opponent like this is even better for me."



Handshake between Berdych and Verdasco at the end of the match

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