By Jake Davies

  • Kyle Edmund vs Grigor Dimitrov [3]
  • Rafael Nadal [1] vs Marin Cilic [6]
  • Roger Federer [2] vs Tomas Berdych [19]
  • Hyeon Chung vs Tennys Sandgren
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – The quarter-finals are set and we look at the line-ups for the men’s last eight, featuring our very own Kyle Edmund.

 

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Kyle Edmund vs Grigor Dimitrov [3] H2H: Dimitrov leads 2-0

Kyle Edmund in the third round of the Australian Open 2018

Kyle Edmund in the third round of the Australian Open 2018 | (PAUL CROCK/AFP/Getty Images)

There is a lot of expectation on Kyle Edmund‘s shoulders. None more so than now after Andy Murray takes time away from competitive action and the British No.2 has been absolutely sensational to watch at this year’s Australian Open. I think this two week period has been a real character-building experience for Edmund.  Not only is he playing some of his best tennis, but he is coming back from difficult situations in difficult conditions, just as we saw in his third round match against Nikoloz Basilashvili. There’s a certain toughness about the Brit that we have not always seen in the past, which could be the signs of a future Top 20 player.

Edmund faces World No.3 Grigor Dimitrov next. Dimitrov is getting better match by match. He was lucky to remain in the tournament in the first round, but the execution of the forehand, the resilience in defence and the mental fortitude has all been integral in him still being in this event, particularly in his fourth round match against Nick Kyrgios.

I think Dimitrov will find a way to win, but I really would not count Edmund out at all.

Prediction: Dimitrov in four sets

 

Rafael Nadal [1] vs Marin Cilic [6] H2H: Nadal leads 5-1

Rafael Nadal in the first round of the Australian Open 2018

Rafael Nadal in the first round of the Australian Open 2018 (Photo by James D. Morgan/Getty Images)

The World No.1 Rafael Nadal came into this event with a lot of doubts and concerns raised about whether he would have an injury-plagued year. He has looked pretty impressive, dropping just the one set on his way to the quarterfinal. Facing Marin Cilic on a hardcourt is no easy task. The Croatian has won his one and only major at the US Open on a hardcourt and when he is confident, he can be difficult to stop. Nadal will be aware of that. The Spaniard holds a 5-1 head-to-head record, but I do expect this to go the distance.

Prediction: Nadal in five sets

 

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Roger Federer [2] vs Tomas Berdych [19] H2H: Federer leads 19-6

Roger Federer in the second round of the Australian Open 2018

Roger Federer in the second round of the Australian Open 2018 | (SAEED KHAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Roger Federer has sailed through his first four rounds of the Australian Open. He is not playing his best tennis, but he is doing what is required to get through the opening tests as quickly as possible to ensure him to be physically ready from the quarterfinal onwards. He holds a very good head-to-head against Czech’s Tomas Berdych, but Berdych has won some big matches in that head-to-head, including the one en route to his only Grand Slam final at Wimbledon 2010.

Will Federer step up his level even more for this match? Probably. Not many players have stormed through their draw quite like Berdych has, so he is a dangerous opponent that can blow his opponent off the court. Berdych has a big serve, but Federer has that confidence to pick his spots on first and second serve in the big moments of the big matches.

Prediction: Federer in four sets

 

Hyeon Chung vs Tennys Sandgren H2H: First meeting

Hyeon Chung in the fourth round of the Australian Open, 2018

Hyeon Chung in the fourth round of the Australian Open, 2018 | (Photo by XIN LI/Getty Images)

In the more unlikely of quarterfinal matches, South Korea’s Hyeon Chung faces Tennys Sandgren. It is a huge opportunity for both players to get into a first ever major semi-final. Chung has had a sensational run, beating Alexander Zverev and Novak Djokovic on his way to this stage, but Sandgren’s rise from the Challenger circuit to a major quarterfinal is nothing short of unbelievable. He had not won a single Grand Slam main draw match until this tournament.

I’d give Chung the edge. He has improved all areas of his game. He’s gone from a good defender to a very good defender. His serve is not a weakness anymore. It is pinpoint accurate now and I think he will get into a first ever major semi-final.

Prediction: Chung in four sets

 

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